Huitlacoche has been spotted at the farm. This crazy looking growth is actually an edible fungus that is considered a delicacy to many cultures. In Mexico it is very common during rainy seasons and can be found as a filling in empanadas, tacos, soups, and can even be purchased canned in grocery stores.
The word huitlacoche comes from the Nahuatl language and culinary use of the fungus can be traced back to Aztec cuisine. In the United States it has long been referred to as “corn smut” and has been viewed as a blight until very recently. Chefs and restaurants have begun to incorporate it into their repertoire rebranding the delicacy as the “Meixcan truffle”.
The frequent rains we have been recieving in South Texas this spring have created the perfect conditions for huitlacoche to form. It’s dependence upon specific conditions and relative scarcity (I found one ear out of hundreds so far) probably account for it’s special place as an ancient, much appreciated food source.