How to make it

  • Bring stock to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan, add salt. Gradually sprinkle the cornmeal into boiling liquid, whisking constantly to prevent lumps.
  • Add whole habanero and reduce heat to very low. Cover the pan and cook the cornmeal, stirring with a wooden spoon every 3 minutes, until liquid is absorbed, the mixture is thickened, and the cornmeal is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
  • While you stir, use the bottom of a wooden spoon to flatten the chile against the side of the pan, releasing its heat. When cooked, uncover the pan and remove the chile. Stir in 2 tbs of butter, cover, and place on a cool burner.
  • Heat a 8-10-inch skillet over medium heat and, when hot add the remaining butter. When the butter bubbles, add the minced onion and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is softened about 3 minutes. Stir in the chopped chiles and the cilantro. Season the vegetables to taste with cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper. Remove from heat.
  • Butter a 2 1/2 quart baking dish. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine the buttermilk, beaten eggs, creamed corn, drained whole corn, and sauteed vegetables. Add uncooked cornmeal and cooked cornmeal, stir to combine, then stir in 1 packed cup of grated cheese, reserving the rest for later. Season the pudding with more salt and pepper and pour into baking dish. Bake the pudding in center of oven for 35 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and continue to bake until mixture is a golden brown, about 30 minutes more. Serve.

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