I have this recipe for cornbread that I found ages ago. (I have no idea where.) It's called "The Best Cornbread," and I've used it as a base for all the cornbreads I've made over the years. We recently moved to Austin, where my stepson and daughter-in-law live, and her family has a pre-Thanksgiving tradition of a Texas chili dinner the night before Thanksgiving. I bring the cornbread. I'm embarrassed to admit that it was only recently that I began browning the butter for the cornbread—I've had so many butter mishaps—burning butter, forgetting to add it to recipes, miscalculating (sticks? cups? ounces?)…. Browning the butter seemed like too much to ask. Except that it adds a layer of deliciousness that is totally worth babysitting it to make sure it doesn't burn. (And that you don't forget to add it…..)
You can serve the cornbread directly from the pan. —drbabs
Test Kitchen Notes
Yup, delicious. Sweet and nutty and a great texture. I love the seeing the flecks from the brown butter, too. I feel like brown butter and cornmeal were destined to go together and I'm not sure why I haven't always browned my butter when making cornbread. It was a very easy recipe. It took about 35 minutes in my oven. Also, although it didn't specify, I used unsalted butter to make the brown butter as she called for salt later on. The seasoning was perfect. Will definitely add this to my repertoire. Next time, I don't see why I couldn't just pour the batter into my cast iron skillet that I used to brown the butter and bake it in that. Would save the step of buttering the baking dish and save a dish. Also—two people have told me how much they loved it and want the recipe because it's different and better than cornbread they've made before. —Dawne Marie
Heat oven to 400° F. Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add butter, and watch it melt and then brown (it will smell nutty and delicious), swirling the skillet around so it browns evenly. Turn burner off.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Pour milk and yogurt into at least a 2-cup liquid measuring cup. Add egg, and whisk until smooth.
Pour about 3 tablespoons of butter into the bottom of your baking dish, and swirl it around so that the bottom is coated. Pour the rest into the measuring cup with the liquid ingredients.
Fold liquid ingredients into dry ingredients until just blended. Pour batter into the baking dish and smooth the top. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.