Monday, February 21

Southern Cornbread

Cornbread is one of those things that is a must when you're making chili... at least in our household, anyway! Cornbread is simple to make and typically a guaranteed crowd pleaser for the young and old. It can even be relatively healthy! 

If I'm going to allot calories on cornbread, I want it to fit into one of 2 categories:

A. It needs to be super fluffy, and preferably white-ish. 


B. I want it very yellow, mealy, and not sweet at all. 

There's no in between because cornbread is very serious business!! But really, my momma makes the best cornbread I've ever had, but I can't seem to make it like her. She also makes the best spaghetti I've ever had, and my husband says the same thing. Oh, and add chili to that list, too. She makes the best chili I've ever had, although my husband's is a very close second. 


Anyway, here's the "B" version of the best cornbread I know how to make, and by far one of my top 2 favorites I've ever had. Try it, there will be no regrets!! 

Here's what you'll need: 
 Cornmeal, baking powder, flour, a tiny bit of sugar, salt, milk, eggs, and oil (or melted butter). 

Now just dump it all together. Yes, you read that right. Throw everything into the bowl at once. You don't need to mix the dry ingredients first, make a well and pour in the wet. There's no need to even scramble the eggs first. Just truly throw it all into a bowl in whatever order, and stir!

See, all mixed up! Now it's time to get your hot skillet ready. If you happen to have an iron skillet, you are in luck because it will kick this recipe up several notches! If not, don't fret, this will still taste wonderful and you'll still cry happy tears! 

But, if you do have an iron skillet, throw it on medium heat and melt about 1 TBS of butter (or enough to cover the bottom) and rub up the sides a little. Once the butter is melted, pour the batter into the skillet and keep the temp on medium. Let it cook for about 3-5 minutes, and then put the batter filled pan into the oven. The whole purpose of this is to give the cornbread a nice crust, and continuing to cook it int he same skillet in the oven will only helps things along! 

If you don't have an iron skillet, just butter an oven safe dish and pour your batter in and place it directly in the oven. You may not get that crispy crust, but you'll still get delicious cornbread! 

And this is what it looks like coming out of the oven!

Serve it up as a nice snack or along side some husband or momma chili!

1 C Cornmeal
1 C Flour
1 tsp Salt
2 Eggs
1/2 C Oil (Canola, Vegetable, or melted Butter)
2 tsp Baking powder
2 TBS sugar 
1 C Milk
** (1-2 TBS butter for skillet)

Preheat oven to 400. Heat an iron skillet (or oven proof skillet) over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add about 1 TBS butter (or enough to cover bottom of skillet). Meanwhile, mix all ingredients together (stir about 50 times, or until well incorporated). Once the butter is melted in the skillet, pour in the batter. If you don't have an iron skillet, just butter a baking dish (like an 8x8 glass dish) and pour your batter directly in. Place in oven for 30-35 minutes. The top will be slightly brown. Butter and serve warm!!

*Instead of sugar, you can sub in honey or agave nectar, or other sweeteners. You can also leave the sweetener out, although I highly suggest adding a tiny bit.

* Use stone ground cornmeal if you can find it. The mealy/grainy texture is exactly what makes this cornbread so delicious. It gives it texture and makes it less cake-like. It also tastes a lot better and is much healthier!

* Leave your eggs out for a little bit to help the batter mix up better. I often forget and it won't make a difference in the results, but it will mean you have to stir less. 



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