Huitlacoche, also known as “corn smut” is basically a diseased corn. Much the same as some fungi that are harmful on digestion, others can be eaten. This sick corn turns black and rather soft and is said to be similar in taste to truffles.
I found huitlacoche on the menu at Ametsa restaurant in London, a Michelin starred restaurant that’s affiliated with the famous Arzak restaurant in Spain. The corn product came as a condiment to a roast chicken dish. Being a lover of all things truffle, the choice of a main course was made in a split second.
On first appearance the huitlacoche brought something unusual to the place. Black as not a color that’s used often in food as it represents rotting. There was no strong smell to it, as there is with truffle, and on tasting there was no strong flavor either. Sure, there was a distinct taste of corn, but nothing out of the ordinary as had been promised to me.
If it hadn’t been for the color, it would have been just another piece of corn. I will say though that the texture of the corn kernels was much softer than regular corn.
Fear Factor – 3 / Taste Test – 6