Heirloom Bolita Belatove (Purple/Red) Corn (Oaxaca)

Heirloom Bolita Belatove (Purple/Red) Corn (Oaxaca)



(Video above^^^From Milpa to Mesa–translation: “From Corn Farm to Table”–is a preview of the kernel-to-masa process that turns heirloom corn into fresh masa.)

Bolita belatove may be among the rarest of heirloom corn varieties in all of Mexico. Belatove (Zapotec for “maguey worm”, which, like this variety of corn, bares a gorgeous purple/red hue) hails from Oaxaca’s central valleys.

When we began working with belatove in 2014, researchers estimated that it had less than five tons in cultivation across the entire state of Oaxaca. At such a low production level, they feared it to be at risk of near-term extinction.

By offering premium pricing and upfront offtake to farmers, Masienda has directly contributed to growing this landrace population by more than five times (and counting)!

Working with belatove, it’s hard to imagine a world without it—with the right amount of cal (no more than 1% ratio to corn), it yields a beautiful mauve masa and distinctly nutty flavor. We’re hooked.

For cooking tips, follow along with bolita belatove’s Masa Feature at Masienda’s On Masa blog.

By accepting delivery of the landrace maize or heirloom beans associated with this order, recipient acknowledges and confirms that this Masienda product shall not be propagated, cultivated or resold in strict accordance with the Nagoya Protocol and state sales tax regulations.

PLEASE NOTE: Orders received by 2pm PT will ship within 1-2 business days, US holidays excluded and regardless of shipping method (i.e, FedEx Ground versus USPS Priority Express). For example, orders received on or before 2pm PT on Tuesday will ship by Friday; orders received after 2 pm PT on Tuesday will ship out by Friday or Monday. If you require expedited shipping, please email info@masienda.com. Thank you!

For larger orders and wholesale/foodservice, please take 90 seconds to share your production needs with our wholesale hospitality team. Thank you!


Additional Information

Bag Size

5lb bag, 55lb bag

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5 out of 5 stars

4 reviews

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What others are saying

  1. Jennifer Carlson

    My first nixtamalization—amazing!

    Jennifer Carlson (verified owner)

    I had wanted to try making my own masa at home for a long time. I’ve been making tortillas using Maseca and other types of masa harina for more than 20 years, but I had never tried nixtamalizing and grinding my own masa. I didn’t even imagine it was something I could do at home. But we were making a lot of things from scratch during the pandemic, and my fiancé bought a (cheap) grain mill, so I did some searches online for where I could buy corn and cal, and that led me to Masienda. When I saw the description for bolita belatove, I was intrigued. I liked the idea of choosing a rare heirloom corn with an unusual color. I’m so glad I did! I followed the instructions on the site (there happens to be a tutorial featuring bolita belatove specifically!) and I also referenced Masienda’s YouTube video instructions on nixtamalization. The resulting masa and tortillas were PERFECT! They were a lovely light pink-purple color and they puffed up beautifully on my comal. I served them with a roasted pork butt in adobo (Pati Jinich’s recipe) and some salsa verde (cocida and cruda), and they were the best tacos I’ve ever made.

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  2. paul liaw

    nutty deep flavor

    paul liaw

    I have white, yellow, blue, pink, and this one. I think its quite special. It is nutty, and deep flavor while maintaining the sweetness of the corn. I mean its super rare I felt special eating it.

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  3. Tony

    Perfect choice


    Beautiful color and probably the easiest and softest masa to work with. Big plus is tortillas don’t end up tough and hard when reheated.

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  4. Eric V

    Great tasting and easy to handle

    Eric V (verified owner)

    We really like the Bolita Belatove due to the great taste and ease of alkalization. It’s one of the easier varieties to grind. I have a corn mill and while some other varieties take 3 passes through the mill before getting a pretty smooth consistency, this one only requires 2 passes. Makes it easier when you’re making masa twice a week for the family.

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