Lend an ear

Cornmeal makes meals a-maize-ing

KEARNEYSVILLE – Some Southerners so love cornbread they crumble it into a glass of cold milk or buttermilk and eat it up with a spoon and many of us hate to indulge in barbecue, pinto beans or chili con carne without some buttery cornbread on the side.

With chilly fall weather here, it’s the perfect time to put some cornbread on your dinner table.

If you are looking for an easy, basic Sweet Cornbread recipe, this is one for you to enjoy baking with your kids and the whole family. Cooking time is 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400 F degrees. In a bowl, combine 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup cornmeal, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt. In another bowl, combine one egg, 1 cup sour cream (you can use nonfat), 1/3 cup milk and 1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened.

Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Pour into greased 8-inch square baking pan. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Serve warm.

A quick and easy 1-2-3 Cornbread Muffin was created by accident by my granddaughter Sarah Grace. For this, you’ll need 1 can creamed corn, 2 boxes corn muffin mix, 2 tablespoons sugar and 3 eggs. Mix ingredients together with a fork and ladle into muffin tins. Don’t add any other liquid. Bake according to package directions.

How about some Corn Bread Pie? This recipe comes from an old cookbook used by the Baltimore and Ohio Capital Limited Railroad that my son Wes gave me. Having made this dish several times, I can see why it was one of the most popular items served in the dining car.

You’ll need 1 pound ground beef , 3/4 teaspoon pepper, 1 large onion, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 can tomato soup, ½ cup green pepper, 2 cups water, 1 cup whole kernel corn (drained) and ½ teaspoon salt.

Brown the beef and onion in a skillet. Add the soup, water, seasonings, corn and green pepper. Mix well and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Then fill a greased pie dish or casserole ¾ full, leaving room for the corn bread.

To make the corn bread, you’ll need ¾ cup corn meal; 1 tablespoon flour, 1 tablespoon sugar; ½ teaspoon salt, 1½ teaspoons baking powder, ½ cup milk and 1 egg. After the first ingredients are sifted together, add one beaten egg and ½ cup milk. Stir lightly and fold in 1 tablespoon melted fat. Cover the meat mixture with this topping and bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes. Don’t be alarmed when the topping disappears into the meat mixture. It will rise during the baking and form a good layer of corn bread.

For Cornmeal Cakes, stir together 1 6-ounce package buttermilk cornbread mix, 2/3 cups milk and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Stir in 1 cup fresh corn kernels (from two ears) or drained canned corn. Drop mixture by ¼ cupful for each cornmeal cake onto a hot lightly greased griddle or large nonstick skillet.

Cook over medium heat 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until golden. For a great meal idea with these, top each cake with coleslaw, a layer of smoked chicken, barbecue sauce,and avocado slices.

For Jiffy Cornbread Casserole – my favorite Jiffy cornbread corn casserole recipe – you’ll include corn in three ways: regular kernals, creamed and the Jiffy mix. (As far as I’m concerned, you can never have too much corn.)

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F, then combine 1 17-ounce can of whole corn (drained); 1 17-ounce can of creamed corn; 1 cup sour cream; ½ cup melted margarine; 2 eggs and 1 8.5-ounce package Jiffy Corn Muffin mix. For some added zing, add prepared green or hot chilies to the mixture.

Now pour into a 2–quart casserole dish. Bake for 1 hour and 40 minutes. It is so moist and delicious and it will make your mouth water as soon as you smell it beginning to bake.

You can make Cornbread stuffing for Thanksgiving, too.  This is an excellent, super easy and tasty recipe that yields nine cups of stuffing.

First in a small bowl, sauté 1 cup minced onion, 1 cup minced celery, and ¼ cup minced parsley in ½ cup margarine for about 5 minutes or until tender. Add 5 cups corn bread crumbs, 3 cups soft bread crumbs, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, 1 teaspoon sage, ½ teaspoon thyme, 1 cup chopped pecans (optional), and ½ cup cooking sherry (optional).

Place inside your turkey and bake with bird if your like or you spoon into a casserole dish and bake separately for your holiday table.

— Feedback is a food columnist’s best friend. Send your thoughts on this column, questions about cooking and ideas for future columns to Patt Welsh at pwelsh@shepherd.edu or to the Spirit newsroom, 210 N. George St., Charles Town 25414.


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One Response to Lend an ear

  1. I can’t wait to try these recipes, as I know Patt to be one of the best cooks I know.

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