Cornbread, Southern Style #Recipe

My friend, Sue Ward, lives in the UK and recently asked for a recipe for cornbread. So I am dedicating today’s post to her.

My mother was born in Kentucky and grew up in the mountains of West Virginia in a coal town called Red Dragon. My father was born in Virginia, and when his father took a job on the railroad, the family moved to Hinton, West Virginia. So I come for a long line of true Southerners.

Having learned to bake cornbread from my mother and my father’s mother, I bake from an age-old recipe that I feel is authentically southern. And savory. (I can hear my grandmother now, “No self-respecting Southerner puts sugar in cornbread.” Oh, how I miss that genuine, straightforward woman!) So here is the recipe handed down to me from my mother. (Please note: the original recipe calls for bacon grease rather than vegetable oil, but everyone I know is trying to eat healthier these days. Also, my mother and grandmother always baked their cornbread in an iron skillet which gave the bread a nice crust, but not everyone has an 8 inch iron skillet, so I've replaced that with an 8 inch square pan.)

Southern Style Cornbread

1 cup stone-ground yellow cornmeal
1 cup all purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees (for UK cooks: 218 Celsius, gas mark 7)

1.    In a bowl, stir together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt.
2.    In a second bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, and oil.
3.    Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just enough to combine. Do not over mix.
4.    Pour batter into a greased, 8 inch square pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.

I often add a teaspoon of liquid smoke which offers the smoky flavor of bacon without the added animal fat.

Everyone should try the original recipe (using 1/4 cup bacon grease, from American-style smoked bacon, instead of the oil) at least once in their life. It is absolutely delicious!

1 comment:

?wazithinkin said...

You know I am going to have to start using bacon grease now when I make cornbread. :) I have also started adding a handful of grated cheddar cheese to my cornbread. Occasionally I will add chopped jalapeno peppers as well. I need to exercise caution when I do this though, I tend to add to many.