Monday, October 22, 2012

Buttermilk Sour Cream Cornbread

Cornbread made with buttermilk, sour cream and creamed corn.
Cornbread made with buttermilk, sour cream and creamed corn.

Buttermilk Sour Cream Cornbread

The cornbread that most of our grandmothers made was fairly straight forward - not much more than cornmeal, a leavening of some kind, a little salt, and some kind of fat which might be lard, or bacon drippings or even the addition of an egg, but often not. Sometimes there would even be a touch of buttermilk, but not always. The majority of the time, I keep my cornbread pretty simple too, but every once in awhile I do like a change, usually depending on what I'm serving, and this sour cream cornbread has been a reliable recipe handed down for years.

We had a nice rainy morning on Thursday, which helped to bring the humidity down again and give us some cooler nighttime temperatures, down in the 50s again and just enough to tease me into deciding to put on a pot of soup. Oh, don't think it's really all that cool. Here in the Deep South, we just wanna think it is.

That's one thing I still don't think Southerners who live north of this part of the Deep South don't get - just how hot it stays down here for most of the year. Heck, y'all up there in north Louisiana, Alabama and southern Georgia are probably already running around in sweaters and jackets, while we've still got our flip flops on and air conditioners running every single day, but hey... at least it's not running quite as hard as mid-summer, right? Could be worse, that's a fact. And the nights are cool... even if we are all sleeping through it.

Can you believe these crazy folks in my neighborhood have been burning fires in their fireplaces at night though? It's really funny that houses here are even built with them to be honest, but that one or three actual cold days we get in the winter, we enjoy them. Seems some folks are impatient. Welcome to the Deep South - where we are all ready and still waiting for some real fall weather.

Anyway, this cornbread was the perfect match for the Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup I made. It steps away from the traditional cornbread to include a little bit of flour, just enough to give it some body, but not enough to make it qualify as bread. The addition of sour cream and creamed corn make it so tender and moist, although, if you prefer, you can certainly make it with just straight buttermilk too. And, as I do with cornbread most of the time, I like to use a little bacon drippings.

I really don't use bacon fat as much as some of y'all probably think I do, but you better believe I save the drippings when I do cook up some bacon, and I do use it, and I use it regularly with cornbread. I just love the flavor it adds. I am still a little jeevy about keeping it out on the stovetop though, especially since I don't go through it as quickly as maybe they did back in the day. Even though I use this cute little vintage grease pot now, instead of those versatile Mason jars, I do still keep mine refrigerated. When you have time, pop by and visit my old post on things to do with bacon fat - it's really a very versatile "third" seasoning!

My vintage grease pot. Do you use one?
Delicious, so moist and tender, we just love this cornbread. Try it for a change!

Here's how to make it.

Recipe: Buttermilk Sour Cream Cornbread

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 25 min
Total time: 35 min
Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

  • 3 tablespoons of bacon fat, butter, shortening, oil or a combination
  • 1-1/2 cups of all purpose white or yellow cornmeal
  • 3 tablespoons of all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup of buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup of sour cream
  • 1 (15 ounce) can of cream corn
  • 2 large eggs

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Add bacon fat to a 10 inch cast iron skillet and place into the oven, just long enough to melt.

Meanwhile, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the buttermilk, sour cream, cream corn and eggs; mix well. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and swirl the fat around the skillet. Pour the fat into the batter and mix in. Bake at 450 degrees F for about 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes back clean. Carefully turn out onto a plate, slice and serve.

Cook's Notes: May substitute a good self rising buttermilk cornmeal mix like White Lily. Omit items 2 through 6 on the ingredients list, except include 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda with the mix. May also substitute a full cup of either sour cream or buttermilk.

For Mexican Cornbread: Leave in the creamed corn, or substitute an (11 ounce) can of Mexican corn, undrained and pulsed in a food processor, or finely minced by hand. Add in 1/8 cup finely minced onion, 1/4 cup or more of chopped pickled jalapenos, and 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack or sharp Cheddar cheese. For a milder version, substitute a can of drained, chopped green chilies for the jalapeno. Add in 1/2 pound of browned and well drained breakfast sausage or ground beef. The ground beef is excellent with taco seasoning added.


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Posted by on October 22, 2012
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