This is for all of the non-cornbread fans, like me. I do not like dry things and in my experience, that is always what cornbread has been. Similar to those southern biscuits. Count me out for my fear of choking on that dryness turned into a scary, throat blocking paste. Okay, seems a little harsh. And just maybe one of you could change my mind on a biscuit, kind of like I will change your mind on cornbread.
How did we get to the name "better than cake cornbread?" While eating cornbread and white chicken chili at dinner one night, we each had our little slice of cornbread. Josh went in for a second piece which was equivalent to a quarter of the pan and announced (as if talking to a large crowd) this cornbread is better than cake.
Note, don't stop reading after the instructions because there are some helpful hints to follow, along with the perfect butter topping for cornbread!
1 Cup of flour
3/4 Cup of Yellow Cornmeal (if you have white, that's fine!)
1 tsp of Salt (thanks to The Food Nanny this is my favorite "mix-in" salt
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 Stick of Butter, Softened
3 Tablespoons of extra butter (1 T for greasing the pan & 2 T melted for drizzling on after it's been baked)
1/4 Cup of Oil (I used Olive Oil)
1 whole Cup of Sugar
1/3 Cup (heaping) of Honey
2 Large Eggs
1 & 1/4 Cup of Buttermilk
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees with your favorite skillet in the oven during the preheat. This is my favorite cast iron skillet set (& I used the 12").
In a mixing bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients. In a second bowl, combined all of the wet ingredients Combine the wet ingredients in to the dry ingredients. My favorite tool as of lately is this Dough Hook from The Food Nanny. If you don't have a dough hook you can use a wooden spoon - these are my favorite from Junky Janko Market (they stand on their own!)
Mixing with a dough hook or a wooden spoon is essential as you're looking just to incorporate all of the ingredients. You don't want to over mix & lumps are ok! And... on a whole side note, when possible, skip the mixers and beaters. There is something special about using simple tools to mix up your food by hand!
Alright, back to it. Once you've gotten your batter mixed together it's time to finish prepping the skillet. Take it out of the oven and use 1 Tablespoon of butter to grease the bottom of the pan. Immediately pour the batter in and place it back into the oven. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes - this will vary with your oven. You are looking for it to be just cooked through, do not over bake it or you'll have a dry cornbread! You can use the toothpick trick similar to how you would test to see if a cake is done. If poke the cornbread and have a few crumbles left when you pull it out - it's perfect!!
Once it's out of the oven, it's time to drizzle the last 2 Tablespoons of butter (melted) over the top of the cornbread. Lastly, you can drizzle a healthy amount of honey over the top. Let it rest for a few minutes, so it absorbs the extra goodness and then dive it!
You do not need a skillet to make this - you can bake it any pan. Just remember, you only preheat the pan if it is cast iron. if you're using a 9x3, do not preheat the pan!
Once you're done serving the cornbread, remove it from the cast iron skillet. You never want to store food in an iron pan unless you want that nice metal, iron taste.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.
Don't have buttermilk? that's okay, mix 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice into 1 Cup of Milk and let it sit for five minutes.
Now onto more goodness which goes perfectly with Cornbread... Honey Butter
1 and 1/2 Sticks of softened butter