Cast Iron

The Greatest Cornbread, Ever

June  5, 2011
Author Notes

Cornbread is an easy answer to the "What should we have for dinner?" question on nights when I'm feeling lazy -- add a really simple salad and a poached egg and you're set.

I tried a lot of recipes in looking for my cornbread soulmate, and this one satisfies all of my requirements: a high ratio of cornmeal to flour (1:1 here!), no fancy ingredients (honey, molasses, what have you), and not so many eggs or so much milk that I can't make it when the fridge is on the empty side.

This is actually the un-veganization of a vegan recipe I found on the internet (no flax seed for me, please, and bacon fat makes for the crispiest crust), and it's perfect in every way. Do yourself a huge favor and eat the leftovers the next day toasted, spread with avocado, and drizzled with balsamic. Just, wow.

One last note: try sauteeing a sliced onion or two in your skillet while you prep the batter, then pour the batter directly over the caramelized onions, bake, and flip it all out of the pan to serve. —Nozlee Samadzadeh

  • Serves 8-12
Ingredients
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal (any kind -- finely ground, coarsely ground, blue, etc)
  • 1 heaping tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 scant teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup milk (any kind -- I always use soymilk)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon bacon fat or canola oil
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place bacon fat in an 8- or 9-inch cast iron skillet and place in oven. (If using a Pyrex baking dish, just oil it and set aside).
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients -- flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, and eggs.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix only until incorporated and smooth.
  5. Pour batter into skillet (careful, it's hot!) and bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cut into wedges and serve!

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Review
I'm Nozlee Samadzadeh, a writer, editor, farmer, developer, and passionate home cook. Growing up Iranian in Oklahoma, working on a small-scale organic farm, and cooking on a budget all influence the way I cook -- herbed rice dishes, chicken fried steak, heirloom tomato salad, and simple poached eggs all make appearances on my bright blue kitchen table. I love to eat kimchi (homemade!) straight from the jar and I eat cake for breakfast.