[Sca-cooks] masa

Nick Sasso grizly at mindspring.com
Sun Nov 11 07:47:55 PST 2007

-----Original Message-----
Take a look at the words, if I grasp the pronunciation correctly, masa is a
derivative of maiz and will be pronounced with a long "a," while massa will
be pronounce with a short "a".

Massa, in this case, is a ball of dough (a sourdough starter) that is used
to leaven a batch of dough and is recovered before baking.  In France, it is
a levain and in Italy it is a bigga (although that may also refer to a

Bear   >> > > >> > >

I buy the sourdough ball of dough/starter thing.

As for the pronunciation, both are short a sound.  The long a sound in maize
coumes from combining the sounds of a and i together into a sort of dipthong
. . . ahh + eee makes ahheee,  which is basically the long A in English.
Hispanic languages are similar to latin, but not the same.  the two
spellings of masa/massa could be simple language variations with the same
pronunciation.  The meanings we are discussing are separated by some several
centuries, so the object described could very well be different masa
(modernly, ground hominy flour in Mexico) and massa (wahtever it was in the

niccolo difrancesco

More information about the Sca-cooks mailing list