Is there anything better than cornbread, warm from the oven and slathered in butter?
Is there anything more disappointing than day old, nay, 6 hour old, cornbread that’s dry in your mouth even though it’s slathered in butter?
How can something that is so good the first time around be so dry and unpalatable mere hours later?
Is it possible to extend the life of cornbread? I don’t need a lot — just an extra day to finish off the other half of the loaf. (I realize that for those of you with larger families, finishing off a single loaf of cornbread isn’t really a stretch. But for those of us cooking for 2, leftovers are a daily reality — it’s not worth the hassle to split a 1 egg recipe in half.)
These questions of gastronomic philosophy played through my head as I prepared to make the perfect side for a pot of Maple Baked Beans. I found the answer in the pantry, or rather, it found me. Creamed corn.
I usually throw some canned or frozen corn niblets (so much less military sounding than kernels) into cornbread batter, but the creamed corn screamed at me as I was pulling the baking soda out of the cupboard — it must of known I would acquiesce to avoid confrontation.
After that, I threw caution to the wind and substituted sour cream for some of the milk, then allowed the batter to sit for 10 minutes while I heated the fat in baking pan. The extra time allowed the cornmeal to absorb more liquid before it could evaporate in the heat of the oven.
As with all cornbread, it’s best 15 minutes out of the oven. That said, I thoroughly enjoyed 2 pieces of this cold, with a pat of butter, for lunch the next day. It didn’t even need warming. I’m sure glad that creamed corn spoke up.
Pender Island Cornbread
Yield: 1 loaf pan
|Milk||¾ C||180 ml|
|Sour Cream or Yogurt||¼ C||60 ml|
|Egg, slightly beaten||1|
|Cornmeal, med grind||1¼ C||300 ml|
|Flour||½ C||125 ml|
|Sugar||1 T||15 ml|
|Baking Soda||1 t||5 ml|
|Salt||1 t||5 ml|
|Creamed corn||¾ C||180 ml|
|Green Onions, thinly sliced on bias||2|
|Chilli Flakes||¼ – ½ t||1-3 ml|
|Bacon Fat or Vegetable Oil||2 T||25 ml|
C=Cup t=teaspoon ml=millilitres T=tablespoon
Adjust the oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 375˚ F.
Whisk together the milk, sour cream/yogurt and egg until well blended.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the milk and egg mixture, creamed corn, green onions, chilli flakes and cayenne and mix well. Allow this mixture to sit on the counter for 5-10 minutes while you prepare the pan.
Add the bacon fat or vegetable oil to a 5”x8” loaf pan and heat in the oven for 5-10 minutes until shimmering.
Pour the batter into the preheated fat and bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the top is lightly brown and the sides have pulled away from the pan; a toothpick inserted into the center will come out clean.Cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan. Serve warm.
Wrap fully cooled leftovers tightly in foil for consumption the next day.