Cornbread is a southern staple. It is frequently served at lunch and supper with just about any southern dish. My grandmother even used to crumble up leftover cornbread and stuff it into a cup of buttermilk for a snack! My dad makes the best cornbread and there are very few suppers that I can remember that were not served along with a warm slice of southern goodness.
It wasn't until I moved to Ohio that I found out that there is a different version of cornbread served in the north. Southern cornbread is made with a higher ratio of cornmeal to flour and has little to no sugar in it. Northern cornbread tastes more like pound cake to me. It has more flour than cornmeal and a heap of sugar. Now I love a good pound cake, so I am not hating on sweet cornbread, but it is served more as a treat than a staple.
Since my Ohio friends are used to the sweet version of cornbread, I have tried to meet in the middle by adding a little honey to mine. You are welcome to add extra honey or even sugar to your bread. I also like to throw in some chopped yellow onions and hot peppers. I brought my potted jalapeño and tabasco peppers indoors for the winter and stuck them in our guest bedroom. They have adjusted well to the indoors and, although they are working at a slower pace, they are still producing.
- 2 cups yellow cornmeal
- 1 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons honey (or sugar)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 2 eggs
- Optional: small handful of chopped onions and hot peppers
Heat oven to 425 and stick a cast iron skillet in to pre-heat with the oven. Mix all dry ingredients first and then add the wet ingredients (use only 1 of the 2 tablespoons of olive oil for this because you will use the remaining tablespoon to grease the pan). Mix well and toss in the chopped onions and peppers if you are adding them. Take skillet out of the oven and pour in the other tablespoon of olive oil. Move the pan around to get it nicely distributed so that the inside of the pan is covered evenly. Pour your cornbread mixture into the skillet and pop it into the oven for 20-30 minutes, or until a fork comes out clean when inserted. Cook time will vary depending on the size of your skillet and whether you are adding the onions and peppers.
Wrap in foil and store leftovers in the fridge. Enjoy!