Mmm, there’s just nothing like fresh homemade cornbread, is there? I love how it combines the sweet with the savoury, and the cornmeal (polenta to you Aussies) adds such wonderful texture to a fluffy body. Once I left for uni and chili became a dietary staple, I tried several different cornbread recipes to accompany it—unfortunately, no cornbread recipe I’ve tried has ever really compared to this one. Either it’s just that this is what my mom always made and it is therefore what I know and love, or it really is as amazing as I thought it was.
One thing’s for sure—the rate at which it disappeared the last time I made it sure said something as to its deliciousness. I recommend slicing it into twelve squares instead of nine, else you’ll find yourself lacking cornbread all too quickly!
Makes: 9-12 servings
Cooking time: 15 minutes hands-on, 45 minutes baking plus cooling
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup butter
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 cups plain flour
- 1 cup cornmeal (polenta)
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- optional: 1 tin (about 12-14 oz, 300-400 ml) corn kernels or creamed corn
- optional: small jar of pickled jalapeno, coarsely chopped or laid out on top
Cream together sugar, butter, eggs, and salt until smooth and light in colour. Sift together dry ingredients, then add to the butter and sugar alternately with the milk. Stir until no lumps can be seen. If using, add the corn kernels or jalapenos.
Bake in a greased 9×13″ or 10×10″ ovenproof dish, for 35-45 minutes at 375 F / 190 C until the top of the bread is going golden-brown and a knife or toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. (My oven usually takes about 45 minutes.) The golden-brown might make it look overcooked, but I promise it will still be moist on the inside.