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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

The Corny Corner

Comitan De Dominguez, Mexico

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

Corn is integral to the cultures of Mexico, Central and South America. As we walked around Comitan's Plaza we saw food stalls selling roasted, boiled and loose corn.

Did you know that corn is a human invention? It's a plant that does not exist naturally in the wild. It can only survive if planted and protected by humans.

Tubs of corn, and corn in cups with salsa, spices and grated cheese

Tubs of corn, and corn in cups with salsa, spices and grated cheese

 Scientists believe that ancient peoples living in central Mexico developed corn at least 7,000 - 10,000 years ago. It was started from a wild grass.

 

Before corn plants were domesticated, maize only produced small, 1-inch long corn cobs, and only one of them per plant. Many centuries of artificial selection by the indigenous people of the Americas resulted in the development of the maize plants we know of today, capable of yielding several cobs per plant and growing as "high as an elephant's eye."

Corn on the cob as we know it today grilled over a charcoal fire

Corn on the cob as we know it today grilled over a charcoal fire

Often referred to as humanity’s greatest agronomic achievement, maize is now grown all over the world.

As the basic grain of the Americas, it shapes daily meals, and The People of the Corn eventually depended upon this crop for much of their food. Indigenous cultures consider corn to be so important, partly because it allows them to live in peace. They have food security and are not warring with other tribes over trying to feed their families. 

Chayote and corn cooking in a hot pot

Chayote and corn cooking in a hot pot

When Europeans like Columbus made contact with people living in North and South America, corn was a major part of the diet of most native people. When Columbus stumbled upon America, he also stumbled upon corn. But up to this time, people living in Europe did not know about corn.

These corn stands set up nightly in Comitan

These corn stands set up nightly in Comitan

Maize spread to the rest of the world because of its ability to grow in diverse climates.

Mayans consider corn to be food of the gods, and in their Creation Story, they, as humans, were actually made from corn.

 

Preparation of sacred corn, in one form or another, takes up much of a Maya woman's day. It could be planting, watering, harvesting, husking, removing the kernels, cooking, mashing, or kneading into masa. Once the masa is made, then it is used in several manners of their cooking; prepared in drinks, sauces or grilled tortillas.

Tortillas made from corn are ubiquitous all through the Americas. On just about every corner you will hear the "slap, slap, slap" of tortillas being made by hand before they are roasted on a hot griddle.

Corn is an amazing feat of man and nature working together.

For more stories on Comitan, click here

For more stories of Mexico, click here

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About the Authors

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their award winning website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website bookstore or on Amazon.com.

Retire Early Lifestyle appeals to a different kind of person – the person who prizes their independence, values their time, and who doesn’t want to mindlessly follow the crowd.

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