Thursday, December 29, 2011

Comfort Food - Cornbread

There's nothing like a bowl of soup or chili on a cold winter day to warm you from the inside out. I'm a chili fanatic. I like veggie chili, chicken chili, chili beans and just plain ordinary chili flavored with ground turkey, beef and/or pork.

I also enjoy a fresh out of the oven slice of cornbread to go with my chili. Requested by my good friend, Howard Lee Kilby, here's a cornbread recipe that's super easy to make.

Bacon Buttermilk Cornbread

Fry five or six pieces of bacon, reserve bacon fat.


1 cup cornmeal
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup buttermilk

Combine dry ingredients; add beaten egg and buttermilk, mixing well. Pour into greased (reserved bacon fat) heated 8-inch or 9-inch iron skillet. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

There should be nearly a quarter inch of bacon grease in the bottom of the heated skillet prior to adding the cornbread batter. You can also stir a few other ingredients into the batter. I added chopped bacon, a chopped jalapeno pepper, eight ounces of cream style corn, and a little shredded cheddar cheese to my batter yesterday.

To serve, flip the cornbread out onto a dinner plate, slice and slather with butter. :)

Here's one of my poems that seems appropriate for this post:


I sat with Belle today,
on a blanket,
under a pine tree.
She told me about her new recipe
for cracklin’ cornbread.
My eye lids became heavy,
I could smell cornbread baking;
I grew warm inside.
I asked questions
to prolong her stay,
how much jalapeno did you say?
drunk again,
under a Virginia pine
on that sweet Georgia accent.

The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature - October 2010 edition


  1. Great poem, Curtis. Between that and the cornbread, I miss living down South...

  2. Both the poem and the recipe are worthy contributions to Cornbread Nation (a la Tim O' Brien)!

  3. Hi, Curtis, Nothing like a good cornbread. I've been thinking of putting together a collection of Christmas soups/stews from old family recipes for next year. Nothing like a good recipe...and a good poem/haiku.

  4. I love chili and cornbread. I usually make individual cornbread muffins but since I have a cast iron pan I just might try this some time.
    Thanks for the recipe. And nice poem.

  5. Now I've just been looking for a good cornbread recipe and here you are! I need it to make Shepherd's Pie... Many thanks.

    1. It's an easy recipe, Merrill. Takes about a 8 or 9 inch skillet. ;)

    2. Hi, Curtis, I won't be using a skillet... I'll be using idividual casserole pans.... I have this huge Shepherd's Pie recipe I'd like to try but can't eat the whole thing at once so I'm baking it in individual pans - wrapping up the one's I can't eat right away and freezing them for later. It's an eggplant, corn, tomato, onions, garlic recipe... with a cornmeal topping. I like your cornmeal recipe better than theirs. But I'm waiting for it to cool down a bit before I do it...before I put the oven on. Many thanks. Hear you guys have some great things going on down there lately.

    3. I love Shepherd's Pie, Merrill.

      Care to share your recipe? ;)

  6. Saute: 2 onions
    1 C sliced green and red sweet peppers
    in oil.

    Add: 1 C tomato sauce
    corn from 6 ears of corn (or used canned or frozen)
    2 TBSP. Ketchup
    salt & Pepper to taste

    Simmer together then put on back of stove to let flavors meld and make your corn meal adding thyme to your corn meal recipe.

    Pour veggies into individual casseroles or into a 2 qt. casserole - and bake at 400 degrees for about an hour .
    Another version of this has you baking half the cornmeal... then topping with veggies and then baking again, but I don't think I want to try that ... seems like something I'm missing there in figuring out what they did. I just intend to serve in the individual casseroles.

    Have fun.

    1. Sounds delicious!

      I may have to try this...soon, really soon. ;)

    2. Curtis, I forgot to tell you peel and cut the eggplant into 1" squares and saute them in with the onions, peppers in the oil. It was in the line above what I posted and in my haste I missed it. It's a large recipe!