Corn is originally from the Americas, but it was introduced to China in the 1500s and quickly became a staple crop, particularly in northern parts of the country.
Cornmeal is the most popular way to process corn. The kernels are ground into flour, which is used to make all manner of dishes, from bread and cake to chips and porridge.
Although most corn in China today is used as animal feed, at its height in the 1940s, about two-thirds of China’s corn was consumed by people.
In this exclusive video first released to Goldthread, Li Ziqi, a Chinese internet celebrity known for her videos about life in the countryside, shows us how to make a myriad of traditional Chinese dishes—from scratch—using corn.
The variety she prepares is impressive. In the video, she steams cornmeal to make corn cake and toasts crisps to make corn chips (she even prepares some guac for it).
Later, she garnishes a corn porridge with Sichuan chili, makes a pot of corn soup, and tops it off with a liquor made from corn.