Friday, October 17, 2014

Buttermilk Bacon Cornbread

Grandma’s very moist, sweet and delicious cornbread!
¼ pound unsalted butter
½ cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 cup cornmeal (I use yellow)
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp. salt
6 to 8 slices bacon (cut into 1-2 inch pieces)
1. Place the bacon in a 9 or 10-inch cast iron skillet and put the skillet into the oven. Then preheat the oven to 375° with the skillet inside. Cook until the bacon is almost done. (If you don't have a cast iron skillet, you can use an uncovered Dutch oven or a metal cake pan.)
2. Whisk together all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In another bowl, beat the egg and buttermilk until combined, then mix that into the bowl of dry ingredients. Stir in the melted butter.
3. When the oven is hot, take out the skillet (carefully, as the handle will be hot!). Leave 2 Tbsp. of bacon fat and the bacon in the skillet. Add the cornbread batter and make sure it is evenly distributed in the skillet. Bake for about 25-30 minutes, or until the edges are beginning to brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.
4. Let the bread rest for 10 minutes in the skillet before cutting it into wedges and serving.
Cook’s Note: You’ll notice there are bacon drippings and butter in this recipe. The butter adds needed richness to the bread itself, and the bacon drippings help brown the crust, keep it from sticking to the skillet.
Finally, the method that works best with using a cast iron skillet is to preheat the skillet with the fat and then add the batter to the hot skillet. This helps brown the crust and with the pan already hot, the cornbread cooks more quickly.

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