OK so it's not sourdough, it's not even yeasted. But and this is a big but, i swear it is the best damn cornbread EVER!
In fact, I have just vowed to myself that I can only make this for a special treat because over the course of just today I have lost all reason and have eaten more of this cornbread than i care to admit!
This cornbread recipe is taken from Peter Reinhart's Brother Juniper's Bread Book.
It is the perfect sweetness; I went just a little lighter on the sugar than the recipe called for due to the fact that the actual corn I used was off of cobs that I had frozen fresh from last summer, and I knew how sweet it was. There is a healthy amount of buttermilk in the recipe, and the clincher I think is the generous amount of uncooked polenta (out of the 3 cups of polenta it called for I substituted 1/2 of it with stoneground cornmeal just because I didn't have enough polenta). The uncooked polenta gave each bite a perfect little crunch inside the buttery moistness.
As you can see, the top developed a nice crispy crunch, it is I must say Cornbread Perfection.
For those of you who dare to indulge here is my exact version - ever so slightly altered from Peter's recipe:
- 4 cups all purpose white (I used King Arthur organic)
- 2 1/2 cups uncooked polenta + 1/2 cup stoneground organic cornmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
- 4 1/2 Tablespoons Baking Powder
- 1 Tablespoon Sea Salt
- 1 cup raw sugar granules
- 2 rounded cups corn kernels (I used frozen corn from farm fresh cobs from last summer)
- 3 eggs
- 1 stick butter melted
- 3 cups Buttermilk
Mix all dry ingredients together including corn kernels (used fingers). Wisk eggs, then wisk in Buttermilk and butter. Pour wet ingredients into dry and then mix together (I used my hand again) only until all of the flour is hydrated but no more. Pour into a greased pan. I used one that is rectangular, probably an 8X14 or around there. Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out fairly clean from the middle. And it rises! It is big and thick and makes a lot.
So, if you like cornbread, your in for a treat. Make this if you dare, but be prepared!
It is really perfect the way it is, but I am wonderng if a few chopped up hot chile peppers might make it even more sinful!