PETER MENZEL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PETER MENZEL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Preparing maize. Kitchen worker preparing maize (Zea mays) before making tortillas in Oaxaca State, Mexico. This is a process called nixtamalisation. The maize kernels are boiled in a lime solution and then rinsed (seen here) before being ground into a dough. This process gelatinises the maize starch, removes the tough outer skin and any fungal toxins, and increases the calcium content of the maize.
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