Monday, August 18, 2008

Fried Cornbread :)

I'll let y'all in on a little secret...usually when I post about food it's because I have just pigged out on something wonderful, the guilt sets in, so I write about it to alleviate some of the guilt :) For almost a year now, we have been living on friggin' hamburger helper or the generic version thereof. Three-cheese pasta is the one the boy likes the best. I can not begin to explain how I feel when I look down at my plate and there it is, yet again... I've started just putting a single spoonful on my plate and gagging it down. Anyway this week I decided we needed some greens. Cabbage is our favorite (doesn't require as much prep work as other greens), stir-fried with salt and pepper in about a teaspoon of margarine. We like it just plain steamed too, but tonight it was with a teaspoon of margarine. K, that's where the semi-healthy meal ended....

I remember years ago when I was about 12 or so my mother was reading in the Betty Crocker cookbook or some such yankee publication that a one inch square piece of cornbread had 200 calories! She was quite shocked and had a grand old time calling all her cronies telling them about it. I'm quite sure Betty Crocker was talking about just plain cornbread and not the Martha White (I bow to the god Martha White every time I get praise for my cornbread) self-rising buttermilk cornbread. It is the closest mix there is to real grist mill-down-home southern cornbread...just ask any good southern cook :) Normally I follow the recipe on the back and then add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of sugar...I know my ancestors are rolling around in their graves when I write those words, because all my life I heard "only Yankees put sugar in their cornbread" Blasphemy, I know...and I blame our favorite little old greek grandmother landlord we had in Atlanta for it. She was all about "lotsa, lotsa, eggs, lotsa, lotsa, butter, lotsa, lotsa, cream and sugar" It seems she didn't think very much of my cooking :) She did teach me how to make a mean spanakopita though. K, back to the cornbread...

Last night I decided we needed something to go with the cabbage and everyone knows that the perfect compliment to greens is cornbread. The last time I made cornbread in my iron skillet I didn't get it hot enough before pouring the batter in and it stuck to the bottom. I haven't gotten around to re-seasoning it yet so you see I had to fry the cornbread...I just had to :) I know I could have made cornbread muffins in the muffin pan but they wouldn't have come out with a crust and you just can't eat cornbread if it doesn't have crust so I had to fry it. So since I'm all about not wasting anything anymore, I put the remaining batter from last night in the fridge. Last night we had plain burgers w/worchestishire sauce (yum) because I didn't have to think about lunch the next day, but tonight it was HH, greens and fried cornbread again. You see we had to have it two nights in a row because I wasn't sure how long the batter would last. Well, tonight it was so much better than last night! I don't know why it was, but the buttermilk flavor was much more pronounced tonight. For someone who would never drink buttermilk in a glass, I truly adore the flavor of it in cornbread, cakes and such.

So I do feel somewhat righteous tonight...Last night I ate it grease and all. Believe me, it doesn't matter how much oil you put in the skillet to fry it, it will soak it all up during the frying process. Tonight, I decided to blot it as well as I could on a paper towel...see...righteous :) So I think I'll go roll my big ole pig belly into the bedroom and watch some tv. Can't be expending any of those calories now can we? :)


It seems that out of my 400 posts, this one is my best...or at least the most clicked on. It has occurred to me that even though it has survived in it's own glory I have not included a recipe for "fried cornbread" in the post. Chalk it up to a "senior moment" or a "brain fart" or whatever... Here is the recipe taken straight from the back of Martha White's Self-Rising Buttermilk Corn Meal Mix. The only thing I do different is add sugar.

"Southern Country Cornbread"

1 egg, beaten (I use a medium egg, a large seems to make it dry)
1 1/3 cups milk
1/4 cup oil or melted shortening (I have used real butter but that's just way to decadent)Mostly I use vegetable oil in the batter because it makes it lighter and use bacon fat to grease the skillet because it adds flavor and makes a better crust.
2 cups Martha White Self-rising Buttermilk Corn Meal Mix

Pre-heat oven to 450. Grease 8 or 9 inch oven proof skillet (that's funny isn't it? for the yankees, I suppose) or square pan*, place in oven. Bake at 450 for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Makes 6 to 8 servings
*Recipe will make 12 muffins or 16 cornsticks. Preheat muffin cups or cornstick pans in oven. Fill cups 2/3 full. Bake at 450 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.

If you are going to fry it, start with about a quarter to a half inch of vegetable oil in the skillet and get it *frying hot* I'm not sure just how hot that is. On my stove it's just a fraction hotter than "medium-high" :)


  1. It sounds wonderful - although I don't really know exactly what cornbread is! Sugar, muffins, buttermilk - all those words make me think I would like it a lot!

  2. LOL You are hilarious Prin. Every time I have had a tomato sandwich the past two weeks, I think of you. I've got about 10 pounds of them in the kitchen right now. You're sick of HH, I'm sick of maters. I did make me some cracker salad with some. Deeeevine. I refuse to waste them if I can help it, and every saturday I get about 15 more pounds. I'm drowning in them! LOL

  3. hey i'll ship you some martha white if you'll ship me some 'maters :) my friends bed has dried up and they are so valued down here that real home grown one's are $4.00 a pound...shoot :)

  4. oh, tomatoes are really easy to can. if I had that many i'd be putting up salsa, whole tomatoes, tomato sauce and anything else i could think of for the winter. that's when you really appreciate fresh tomatoes in your cooking :) if you want directions how to do it just let me know and i'll send it to you.

  5. Prin, I cook it in my cast iron all the time, but I bake it at 350 and grease the cast iron pot (with bacon grease, naturally). The crust is nice and crunchy that way, and it hasn't failed me yet. I add all kinds of yummies too: cheddar cheese, red pepper, garlic powder, and if I have left over corn-on-the cob, I save the nibblets and put real corn in it too.

    My mother loves my corn bread. But then again, I'm the baker of the family.

    Sounds like you essentially had hush puppies for two nights. Not a bad thing.

  6. no, now there is a difference between hush puppies and fried cornbread. fried cornbread is not as dense, nor does it have onions and the like in it. It is a light airy concoction with a crisp cornbread crust. My cast iron skillet is down at the moment, needing to be re-seasoned, or that was the excuse i used for that big ole bunch of calories! Yep, you can make many different things with cornbread. I love mexican cornbread with creamed corn, hamburger, peppers and cheese and it was pretty good with my chili recipe drained and layered in it. I used to use bacon grease and still do sometimes because it gives it a wonderful flavor and I have used real butter in it but then I got accused of making cornbread cake :) but mostly I just use regular vegetable oil. Mainly because it seems to make it easier to digest.

  7. Yum...that's all I have to say. And I wish I could cook.

  8. i just can't believe that you can't cook! must be the lawyer in ya :) My very bestest friend social worker got tired of it and went on to be a lawyer and now works pretty much stress-free in her father's law firm. She can't cook either :) I give her my recipes a lot and always make sure I bake or cook her something great when she comes over at christmas. want me to make you a better than sex cake at christmas and send it to you whenever i send hers? they are a german chocolate cake with the icing on the about yum!

  9. I would like a recipe on making my own spaghetti sauce for the freezer. Every recipe I can find uses already canned tomato products. =( Right now I just have frozen raw tomatoes and when I get enough I am going to make up a big batch of sauce. It won't last too long in my house so I prefer to freeze it than can it in jars.

  10. A very long time ago i made spaghetti sauce from fresh tomatoes that had been previously canned I think I used 5 or 6 quarts of tomatoes and it ended up making three of our biggest pots full. i used just about everything in the kitchen, onions, bellpeppers, oregano, garlic, worchestshire sauce, mushrooms but the one thing that i did add that i could never do now was fresh squeezed lemon. oh, my stomach churns to think of it but back then before stomach pain it was delicious! i do remember that we put the excess up in the freezer and would get it out as needed. i hardly ever use a recipe for stuff like that, just fly by what's in the kitchen and taste. i did learn the hard way though that oregano is very tricky, it intensifies as it cooks so be careful with that if you use it. i'm so lazy with my cooking now days that if it's not hunts sauce or tomato products then it doesn't get cooked. hunts has no sugar in their products. we like to mix the garlic and herb and the four cheese together. saves me standing over the stove for hours. sorry i couldn't be more help :)

  11. Oh that's ok. I guess if I ruin it, no big loss, the ingredients are all free. Can't hurt to just give it a shot. =)