I’d like us all to observe a moment of silence for the baking ignitor in my oven. (Silence from me, but not the children.)
Yes, that means my oven isn’t working. We’ve had the most glorious stretch of fall-like summer weather in my memory and I can’t bake a loaf of bread in the oven. But I’m not bitter.
Well, alright, maybe I am a little bitter. But I’m also creative and stubborn. I wanted fresh bread, dang it, and I was going to make it happen. My husband, the Evil Genius, recently added a toaster oven and a large electric griddle to our kitchen. I’ve not yet ‘connected’ with the toaster oven. I have some sort of bias against it. Maybe some day I’ll grow to love it. But the griddle? Where has it been all my life? I can cook enough pancakes for everyone, a full pound of bacon, make French toast for a crowd, or make sausage and eggs for the whole family at the same time! I decided, after a suggestion from the Evil Genius, that I could make English Muffins on the griddle. (**This will be the subject of tomorrow’s post! Please come back for the skinny.) The English muffins were so good, so great, that I thought I just might give griddle cornbread- NOT griddle johnnycakes- a whirl.
**I now interrupt my already rambling programme with a couple brief observations on cornbread. It should be moist, and not at all sweet. It should only be fit for stuffing after one day. If there is any left after one day. And most importantly? My Grandma’s cornbread is the best cornbread in the whole world. There is no discussion on that point. It is so good that it could possibly save the world somehow.
Since I’m obviously partial to my Grandma’s cornbread recipe, I naturally turned to it in order to try out these griddle mini corn breads. And unsurprisingly, they were delicious! The griddle and my English muffin rings tag-teamed to make the most gorgeous, golden-brown crusty, moist, individual sized cornbreads. With a little sliced cheese and some homemade pickles on the side it made a lunch fit for 5 kings and 2 queens (referring to my baby sister and myself.) And since my Grandma is a kind, generous, recipe sharing individual (don’t take my word for it- see for yourself), I know she won’t mind if I share the recipe with you all. After all, when your cornbread can improve humanity it’d be a crime to keep it secret.
There is a chance I might receive a Nobel Prize for passing this cornbread recipe along to you. I won’t let it go to my head.
Despite having eaten several of these within the past two hours I am getting hungry again looking at the picture. These were so tasty.
The crust on the bottoms of these turned out so perfectly it was almost, just almost a shame to eat them. I got over that feeling pretty quickly.
If I tell you that I was holding 7 people back, including me-self, from eating these long enough to take a picture would you be impressed?
Grandma’s Buttermilk Cornbread
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 1½ cups stoneground cornmeal- be sure not to use self-rising cornmeal, here.
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1½ Tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 3 Tablespoons melted butter
- 1¼ cups buttermilk (or soured milk)
- Preheat griddle or frying pan to 375°F. Liberally grease muffin rings (or their designated hitters) and set on griddle or frying pan to preheat as well.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, soda, powder, salt and sugar with a whisk. In a medium sized bowl or large liquid measuring cup, whisk together the eggs, melted butter and buttermilk. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture and stir well. (Grandma's notes specify to use a whisk. I do what Grandma says. It's always for the best.)
- Use a ladle or large spoon to scoop scant ½ cups of the cornbread batter into the hot muffin rings. Allow the mini-breads to cook until you the cornbread is dark golden brown to medium brown on the bottom. If you're in doubt as to whether the time has come to flip them, examine the surface of the batter. It should still be moist looking, but you should be able to slide the ring up without any batter pouring down the sides. Slip a spatula under the ring and cornbread, slide the ring up and off the bread, and carefully flip over.
- Continue to cook until the second side reaches a nice crispy brown. Remove to a cooling rack for a couple minutes. You don't have to cool it for long, but you might want to leave it there long enough to prevent traumatic burns to the roof of your mouth. Resist the temptation. Trust me.