How to make even better cornbread? Treat it more like a biscuit (or scone, or pie crust). The same cold pockets of butter that make a scone crunch outside and billow through the middle do good things for cornbread too. You can bake them into miniature loaves or free-form like scones, with a shorter baking time. Adapted from Vera Obias and Du Jour Bakery in Park Slope, Brooklyn. —Genius Recipes
one 9x9-inch pan
(375g) all-purpose flour
(144g) cornmeal, preferably coarse
(12g) baking powder
(6g) baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons
1 1/2 cups
(150g) grated aged white cheddar
(240g) butter, cold and cubed
3/4 to 1 cups
Heavy cream, cracked black pepper and Maldon (or other flaky) salt for finishing
Combine the first seven ingredients in a food processor. Add butter and pulse until just combined, with pea-sized chunks. Add buttermilk and pulse until dough forms. Let chill for an hour.
Heat the oven to 350° F.
Press dough evenly into a 9x9-inch baking pan. Brush with cream and sprinkle with Maldon sea salt and cracked black pepper. Bake until the top is golden brown and the sides start to pull away from the pan, about 25 minutes.
Genius recipes surprise us and make us rethink cooking tropes. They're handed down by luminaries of the food world and become their legacy. They get us talking and change the way we cook. And, once we've folded them into our repertoires, they make us feel pretty genius too. Watch for new Genius Recipes every Wednesday morning on our blog, dug up by Food52's Creative Director Kristen Miglore.