Friday, November 30, 2012

Skillet-Sizzled Cornbread

I had a request yesterday to post my cornbread recipe, simple comfort food at it's very best. I grew up eating cornbread made in iron skillets, I'd watch Mom as she stirred the egg and buttermilk into the cornmeal mixture. She'd pull the hot skillet from the oven and pour the bacon grease into the golden batter, then quickly pour the whole shebang back into the sizzling skillet and pop it into the oven. In no time dinner would be on the table and a thick slice of golden brown cornbread would be on my plate, already buttered... Mom's do that for the ones they love! 

Step by step, The Cornbread Gospels has many recipes for regional cornbreads. They vary by yellow or white cornmeal, sweetened or unsweetened. There's no wrong way to make this comfort food, but this recipe is as close to the one Mom made in her kitchen on Summit as you can get!

Dairy Hollow House Skillet-Sizzled Cornbread
From The Cornbread Gospels by Crescent Dragonwagon
Cooking spray 
1 cup all-purpose flour 
1 cup stone-ground yellow cornmeal 
1 tablespoon baking powder 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon baking soda 
1 1/4 cups buttermilk 
2 tablespoons sugar 
1 egg 
1/4 cup mild vegetable oil 
2 tablespoons butter 
1. Preheat over the 375F. Coat a 10-inch cast iron skillet with cooking spray. 
2. Sift together flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt into a medium bowl. 
3. Stir baking soda into buttermilk in a small bowl. Whisk in sugar, egg and oil. 
4. Place prepared skillet over medium heat; add butter. Heat until butter melts and starts to sizzle. Tilt pan to coat sides and bottom. 
5. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and combine quickly, using as few strokes as possible. Scrape the batter into prepared pan. Bake until cornbread is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cool a few minutes and slice into wedges to serve. Serves 8. 

*The daughter of writers Charlotte Zolotow and the late Hollywood biographer Maurice Zolotow, Crescent Dragonwagon writes "Nothing is wasted on the Writer" on Typepad. 


  1. Joy, thank you so much for posting this recipe. Would never have thought of buttermilk. Fortunately I have some so it will be cornbread today.

    1. The buttermilk does it's magic in this recipe!

  2. I have always fixed my cornbread in a sizzling hot iron skillet. Makes it nice and crispy and my family likes it thin. So good.

    1. My favorite is a small iron skillet that fits the two of us perfectly, but sometimes I use the cornstick pan and if we have company I have a large square iron skillet that works great!

  3. Cornbread and CHILI, a meal I could live on! I so love cornbread, smothered in butter... good grief! You make me want to get out the skillet, and I have work to do@!

    1. Here you were having a productive day and I had to bring up cornbread...

  4. Sounds like our moms made cornbread almost exactly the same way as we grew up, only mine used regular milk. Mine used a square iron skillet to baker hers in, and she still has it. I recently came across on at our flea market and had to get it to use myself.

    1. I do too and it's just as good! I honestly don't think there's a wrong way to make this downhome, good food!

  5. I have that same cookbook.

    The way mom did it; therefore, how I do it is: I set the oven on 425°, place nearly the right amount of bacon grease (drippings sounds so much better, but I call it grease) into the skillet. Place skillet in oven.

    Stir up recipe for cornbread (mine is the sweet kind) I make a well in the dry ingredients, beat egg with milk pour in well, remove skillet pour grease into liquid. Stir up; pour into very hot skillet. Bake.

    I made this yesterday to go with white beans....wilted lettuce and blackberry cobbler.

    1. Dripping sound so much better, but for my midwest upbringing bacon grease was not a dirty word...LOL! Cornbread, like all breads need a little practice to be "Mom Good!" Glenda, one of these days I'm going to show up at your doorstep a little before dinner!


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