Homemade vegan style Jamaica cornmeal porridge
I have another Caribbean recipe to share with you guys. I’ve been quite slow with submitting Caribbean content simply because I’m doing a lot of trial and error in the respect of adapting a healthier approach to some of the traditional recipes. That’s not to say ALL Caribbean dishes are unhealthy but there is an apparent need to readjust some of the recipes and I quite like the idea of a challenge even if I do say so myself.
I’m really pleased with how this breakfast recipe turned out. It took me some weeks to complete my own rendition of cornmeal porridge. To the point where I now have some of my family drinking this vegan version instead of the conventional one.
Cornmeal porridge (aka polenta) is a dietary staple for Jamaicans; it’s creamy, warming and very very filling. This was something my grandmother would make for me as a young girl. I recall countless days requesting cornmeal porridge specifically from granny because mine would turn out lumpy and she would rebuke me for wasting her precious cornmeal.
Gone are those days making a poor attempt, now I’m proud to say I can make not only the traditional method but also an alternative for vegans.
One thing I’ve learnt during my cornmeal crusade is the importance of condensed milk, especially for the vegan style. My previous attempts were made with solely coconut milk and coconut palm sugar. Granted the results were okay, but underwhelming which left me disheartened. There was an edge and the sweet creamy taste that was missing. Thankfully I was able to identify the missing piece to the puzzle – condensed milk and rescue my recipe.
Finding a perfect vegan version wasn’t easy since a lot of recipes online call for a canned version containing additives and preservatives. Homemade milk wasn’t an option since it lacked the true fat content. Just when I was about to give up I brought some organic coconut milk to make condensed milk and voila – Cornmeal porridge vegan style was birthed.
Yes cornmeal is on the GMO list, you’re absolutely right. However, there are organic and non-gmo versions which can be easily purchased. I used the super fine texture – its yellow and resembles sawdust. They are different textures of cornmeal widely available ranging from super fine to course. I personally like the super fine texture because the porridge comes out creamy and smooth.
See my vegan condensed coconut milk recipe
and homemade coconut milk recipe
- ½ cup of organic cornmeal (preferably non GMO)
- 1 cup of water
- 3 cups of coconut milk (see my homemade recipe link above)
- ⅓ of coconut condensed milk (see link above)
- ½ tsp of cinnamon
- ½ tsp of nutmeg
- ⅛ tsp of himalayan pink salt
- ¼ tsp of vanilla powder (or 1tsp of vanilla extract)
- Mix the cornmeal with water and set aside.
- Pour the 3 cups of coconut milk into a sauce pan and simmer for 2-3 minutes on medium heat.
- Once the milk starts to boil, add the cornmeal mixture to the pot. Do this slowly and make sure to turn consistency to omit lumps - continue to stir until all the watery cornmeal has gone.
- At this point this is where the remainder of recipe requires plenty of stirring, so get that arm in motion while adding the outstanding spices and condensed milk.
- Continue to stir for 15 minutes until the porridge is smooth and creamy.
Cornmeal is sometimes sold as polenta or maize meal.