Sunday, September 25, 2011

Mama’s Cornbread

It’s FALL Y’all!!

Even if we still had triple digit temperatures this week, nothing will stop me from baking my favorite fall dishes. This week I decided to whip up a batch of my mama’s cornbread. Everyone loves my cornbread, a lot, folks even eat it for breakfast the next morning. Ever since I was a little girl, I’d eat cornbread the next morning too. I’d cut myself a big ol’ square, break it up in a bowl, add some milk – just enough to moisten everything up, and microwave for two minutes. It was my “corn meal mush” breakfast of champions.
In fact, one of my mom’s favorite stories is about the year I gave up sweets for Lent. Being a good Catholic school girl, I kept off of sweets for THIRTY-TWO of the 40 days! Do you know how hard that is for a 9 year old?? Finally, I told my mother I couldn’t go one day longer without any sweet for my tooth, so I came up with a plan. I developed this long, convoluted story about how cornbread really shouldn’t count as sweets, and did she know that cowboys lived on this “journey bread” for months at a time while out on the range. I convinced her that since it only contained a shy cup of sugar, that the sugar was merely acting as a preservative, not as a sweetener like in chocolate cake!! Can you believe that?! I think my mother was more impressed with my story-telling ability than how much she believed my tall tale, but, she made me the cornbread anyhow. It should also be noted I convinced her to put an extra spoonful of sugar in the batter, and that I covered my piece in honey and butter that night. But, I deserved it. That gave me my sugar fix, and I managed to finish my eight remaining days “sugar free.”

So whether you make your cornbread for chili or for dessert, this is easy and moist, and oh so delicious. In fact, I’m a little torn giving out this recipe! I used to keep it closely guarded, only shared with family. But, y’all mean so much to me…. I’m sharing my secret – so don’t tell anyone, k?

 

Get out your bowls girls – and boys!!

 

Gather your shy cup of sugar, flour and cornmeal.
I like using coarse ground cornmeal, or any corn meal I can find at a farmer’s market.

Add baking powder.

3 teaspoons in fact.

Ex-squeeze me?

(Lame Wayne’s World reference ~ I <3 the 90’s!)

And the salt! I forgot my salt picture.

Whisk together well!

Add one cup buttermilk.

If you forgot buttermilk, add 1 tablespoon of vinegar to 1 cup of milk, and let it set 10 minutes; it should do the trick!

Oh, and do NOT taste test this.

Melt 3/4 cup butter. Let it cool slightly before adding it to your mixture.

If it’s too hot, it will cook your eggs, and leave a “rubber band” texture between your teeth.

Ewww.

Glorious.

Stir.

But not too much.

Holy Moly, why am I still using a whisk??!!

No! No! Get a spoon.

Add 3 eggs, all at once, and mix JUST until blended.

The batter will be pretty thick. This is one of those DO NOT OVER MIX OR THE TOUGH BISCUIT POLICE WILL CALL YOU, your children won’t love you, your radiator will go out, you’ll lose your keys, and your hair begins thinning recipes.

The buttermilk begins intermingling (ooh, cozy) with the baking powder. Cool chemical things start happening…. and if you mix it too much, it can go flat.

Or worse.

Get tough.

Hanginnnn’ tough.

Whoa. corn-y alert tonight.

NO. PUN. INTENDED.

I’ll stop.

Gently spread in a 9×13 greased pan.

Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

 

Drizzle with ooey gooey honey.

And butter.

And serve with milk.

Here’s your recipe, y’all get to bakin’ now!
You hear?

~Peace, Love, and Johnny Bread Ya’ll!

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Mama's Cornbread

Ingredients:

1 cup yellow corn meal
2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup melted butter, cooled
3 eggs

Directions:

Combine corn meal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl and blend well. Add buttermilk and melted butter slowly. Cool the melted butter slightly before adding, or it will cook the eggs! Stir the mixture gently, then add all three eggs; stir just until combined. The batter will be thick. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake at 400 degrees 20 minutes or until golden a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.

 

 

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