Sunday, March 11, 2012

New Cornbread Recipe

     I found an interesting book at the library entitled "The Cornbread Gospels" written by Crescent Dragonwagon.  In spite of the odd name of the author, I had to check it out.  I have always considered cornbread to be serious comfort food. I've been looking through the book for the past week in an effort to decide which recipe to try first.  I finally settled on the second recipe in the book, "Truman Capote's Family's Cornbread".  I am not a Truman Capote fan, but I tried the recipe anyhow.  The book didn't make any claims as to Truman Capote actually having used the recipe. It merely purported to have come from Truman Capote's great aunt, Sook Faulk, from Monroeville, Alabama.  I was intrigued with the recipe partly because it was so very simple and partly because it used no wheat flour, just corn meal. I also liked the idea of baking the cornbread in a cast iron skillet.  The recipe is as follows:

      1 tablespoon butter or bacon drippings
      2 eggs (I used 2 duck eggs as that was what I had, probably the equivalent of 3 chicken eggs)
      2 cups buttermilk
      1 teaspoon sugar (I used a tablespoon of sugar)
      1 teaspoon salt (I used 1/2 teaspoon of salt)
      1 teaspoon baking soda
      2 cups stone-ground white cornmeal (I used yellow cornmeal because that was what I had)

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the butter or drippings in a 10 inch cast iron skillet, and place it in the oven.

2. Combine the eggs and buttermilk in a small bowl or measuring cup, whisking it together well with a fork.

3. In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, salt, baking soda, and cornmeal, stirring well to combine.

4. Stir the egg and milk mixture into the dry ingredients, beating just until the dry ingredients are moistened, no more.

5. Pull the skillet from the oven. It should be good and hot, with the fat sizzling. Swirl the pan to coat it. Quickly transfer the batter to the hot skillet and return the skillet to the oven.

6. Bake until browned and pulling away from the skillet. Serve hot in wedges from the pan.

Truman Capote's Family's Cornbread
   In spite of my various substitutions it turned out very well. Since it was just cornmeal and no wheat flour I had expected it to be heavier than my regular cornbread, I am happy to report that was not the case. It wasn't heavy at all. I will have to try it sometime with white cornmeal. I have never bought the white cornmeal before as I am just so used to the fact that cornbread should be yellow. If you have any interest in cornbread I would recommend the book. The first recipe I tried was a serious home run.

     For those who are following the epic struggle between species of poultry the current score is Ducks 66, Chickens 0.


  1. Are you sure you don't have all roosters?

    Sounds like a yummy recipe!

  2. I don't think any other cornbread could compete with your current recipe, no matter what the claims of the book may be.

    Do you suppose the chickens are just too young? Ours haven't laid a single egg either.