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Stiff porridge



  1. Heat a cup of water to boiling in a medium-size saucepan.
  2. Meanwhile, in a bowl or measuring cup, gradually add ¾ cup of the cornmeal to the milk, stirring briskly to make a smooth paste.
  3. Add the mixture to the boiling water, continuing to stir constantly.
  4. Cook for 4 or 5 minutes while adding the remaining cornmeal.
  5. When the mixture begins to pull away from the sides of the pot and stick together, remove from heat.
  6. Dump bidia into a bowl.
  7. Then, with damp hands, shape it into a smooth ball, flipping it so that the rounded sides of the bowl help to smooth it.
  8. Serve immediately.
  9. To eat in the traditional manner, tear off a small chunk and make an indentation in it with your thumb.
  10. Use this hollow as a “bowl” to scoop up sauces and stews.
  11. Variations : for a less conventional, but delicious porridge, dump half a cup of yellow cornmeal into a cup or more of boiling water.
  12. It will form lumps, but if you stir and mash vigorously with a strong wire whisk, the lumps will disappear.
  13. Add more cornmeal as necessary until you have a consistency similar to cream of wheat.
  14. Cook for 3 or 4 minutes, stirring constantly.
  15. Serve hot.