Thursday, March 03, 2011

My New Favorite Cornbread Recipe

I love cornbread.  It's like the perfect side-dish to just about any meal.  Big salad? Cornbread side.  Big bowl of soup?  Side o' cornbread.  Sandwich?  Bowl of cereal?  Apple?  They all go deliciously with cornbread.  I've eaten it by itself as a meal many times.  And while some people enjoy their cornbread with honey or maple syrup or slathered in butter, I'm a purist.

Growing up, I ate Jiffy cornbread.  Since I started cooking, I've decided I like the Marie Callender brand better.  I recently tried the Bob's Red Mill gluten-free cornbread, but that left much to be desired (like real flour?).  I've finally given up trying to find a great mix and decided to start from scratch.  The recipe is as close to Marie Callender's cornbread as I've found, plus it's not too complicated.  It can be made with different flours.  It can be made more or less dense, more or less cornmeal-y, and more or less sweet.  I call that fantastic!

1 1/4 c flour (AP or brown rice flour work best)
3/4 c cornmeal
2 t baking powder
1/3 c sugar (I use a 1/2 c for extra sweetness)
1/2 t salt
1 1/4 c milk (whole milk is best, I use 1% without a problem)
1/4 c shortening (butter flavored would be yummy, I used plain Crisco)
1 egg

Cut the sugar into the shortening with a pastry cutter or two forks.  Add the egg and milk and mix well.  Add the rest of the dry ingredients and mix until just combined and few lumps remain.  Place into a greased 8" or 9" baking dish and cook at 400° for 25-30 minutes.

If someone was really savvy, they could make the mix ahead of time and just add milk, shortening, and egg when they wanted a batch.  Methinks some Ziplock baggies are in my future!

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