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Test Recipes: Albers Corn Bread
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Guest






PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your experience is somewhat atypical. It used to be a rule of thumb that the further north you went, the sweeter the cornbread got. Wide distribution of commercial cornbread mixes has obscured this.

Jiffy is northern cornbread: thick, yellow, and sweet. It makes good muffins, but unless you have a real sweet tooth, it's not what you want to use to mop your plate at dinner. Other mixes are less sweet. One clue is the cornbread pictured on the package. If it's white, it's probably less sweet. If your grocery store has a section for black or southern cooking, you might try the cornbread there.

Cracklins (as in cracklin' bread) are the crispy bits left behind after you render down hog fat. They're hard to find these days. Try substituting the bits left in the pan after you fry bacon.

A couple of superior back-of-the-package recipes: Solo Almond Filling (canned, in the baking section; make sure you get the filling, not their almond paste) has a recipe for almond cake that makes people make involuntary happy noises when they taste it. For extra fun, bake it in a ring pan, split it horizontally, and fill and glaze it with hot apricot preserves or marmalade, then coat the top with sliced toasted almonds while the glaze is still hot.

Also: my mother and grandmother both swore the best recipe for canonical pumpkin pie was the one on the back of the Libby's Pumpkin can. After several decades of testing this proposition, I have to admit that I've never found one I like better. You want the straight pumpkin, not the kind that comes with sugar and spices already added.

Teresa Nielsen Hayden
http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/
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Old Jo
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The reason your cornbread tasted sour is that you used much too much baking powder.

My version is the following:
3/4 cup sugar
2 beaten eggs
2 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder -- Obs. NOT tablespoons!!
3/4 teaspoons salt
1 cup yellow corn meal
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 1/2 cups milk

Mix sugar and beaten eggs. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together and add to first mixture. Add cornmeal, melted butter, and milk. Beat enough to mix.
Bake in hot over (400 degrees F / 200 degrees C) about 30 minutes or until done.
Makes 1 panful which cuts into 21 squares.

Wonderful!
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1618
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But 3 teaspoons = 1 Tablespoon!

I will try the Albers recipe one more time (probably tonight) and then try your recipe. It looks like a lot of sugar, but maybe that's why it tastes wonderful!

Thanks,
Michael
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Old Jo
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, 3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon, but I used _two_ cups of flour, not one.

I don't know what Albers cornmeal is. I buy "Polenta" in the underground market here in Stockholm. It is not coarse enough for me, but it is all that is available.
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Guest






PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently had our family in for a Sunday brunch.We served all the usual things,eggs,bacon,sausage etc.we also served corn bread with jalipenos in it.My grandchildren had never tasted it before and ate it all up.I must do it again.
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The Boo Guy
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The well-kept secret from Syracuse, New York is the Dinosaur Barbeque. They already have them in Rochester and Manhattan, with more to follow. Their cornbread is unbelievable (i've made it and eaten it at the restaurant), as is everything else they make. The best barbeque, even according to my southern relatives.

https://dinosaurbarbque.com/catalogue/cookbookcat.htm
http://www.dinosaurbarbque.com/Recipes/recipe_of_the_month_archives.htm
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valik
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice...

Very innovative way of compacting the recipes. You are on to something. I think you can publish a cooking book with that recipe pattern and it will sell. because it's different. I would buy it. But it's got to have color. Just like your pages on the BLOGGER.
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McDee



Joined: 17 Sep 2005
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Childhood memory that I still make when I'm feeling lazy.

One package Jiffy cornbread mix and one package Jiffy yellow cake mix. Combine all the ingredients and bake as directed. It gives a light, fluffy, sweet cornbread much like you get at many chain restaurants.
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fatoudust
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are many people in the South who feel very strongly about the issue of sugar in cornbread. To many, cornbread should not have sugar in it. If it does, then it should be called corn cake or corn muffins, depending upon the form.

There are, of course, many who disagree. It seems to be one of those highly emotional regional things like chili or barbeque that people can get really worked up over.

I've found that using butter instead of oil in the recipe and for greasing the pan helps the texture and flavor of both cornbread and corn cake.
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Guest






PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I prefer sweeter, yellow cornbread. However, I never use sugar, but honey instead. And just enough to leave the hint of honey; the fun part is adding fresh honey & butter while it's still hot. Dipped in chili. Mmm.
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Guest






PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not to sound dume but can't you use corn oil to coat the pan and add to the mix. Wouldn't that give it more corn flavor?
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, if you use honey instead of sugar, what's your subsitution ratio? 1/4c sugar = how much honey? "Just enough" is a little tough to measure for some of us.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The cast-iron skillet is crucial, in my view, and pre-heating it is great, though you can sometimes end up with a tough crust if you are using one of the high-gluten recipies & you pre-heat it all the way to 400.

As far as the north-south divide goes, I'm not so sure. Both of my grandmothers (both old-school Texans who learned to cook in the 20's, presumably before regional differences were all that blurred...) made yellow corn bread.

My mother's mother made it very short, with little sugar added, but using a high ratio of corn meal to flour, which meant it was sweeter than flour-heavy unsweetened cornbreads. She used a large skillet, so the bread was shallow, and shortened it with bacon grease (She would fry breakfast bacon in the skillet, then pour off the extra grease into the cornbread batter, and put the cornbread in the oven to bake while you eat breakfast. You have to eat a lot of bacon to make this work -- not recommended for the cholesterol-threatened.)

My father's mother made a taller, sweeter cornbread, but also using yellow meal. She usually baked it in one of those cast-iron corn-cake pans that make cakes shaped like ears of corn (shorter baking time, more surface area to become crust). She shortened the bread itself with Crisco, but greased the pan with butter.

For my part, I like both of these recipies. I like the flavor of yellow meal better than white. Also, for a more intense corn flavor, you can use a cup of corn meal and, in place of a cup of regular wheat flour, a half cup each of high gluten flour and masa harana or corn flour. You can add kernels of fresh corn, just sliced off the ear. And (yummy with catfish!) you can add sage, black pepper, and onion.
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cookieMC
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try Albers White Cornmeal receipe for for Sweet Cornbread. Use whole
wheat flour instead of regular flour. This one is a winner.
Reminds me when I was in school eating at the cafeteria. It is the best cornbread I ever tasted.
Try it once. You will se what I mean.
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Guest






PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 11:41 pm    Post subject: South vs North Reply with quote

I'm another guy from Michigan just like the poster above. Raised on Jiffy cornbread, which is most DEFINITELY not sweet. None of the cornbread up here is. It's when I went to Georgia that I was introduced to sweet, southern cornbread. And as the previous poster, to that God-awful abomination known as sweetened tea. ::shudder::
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