The Best Cornbread – set your oven on “Hell”

When I asked my grandmother her recipe for cornbread, she started with, “Well, first set your oven as high as it will go.”

There are a lot of variations on cornbread – a staple of down-home Southern cooking. Everyone has their favorite – white cornmeal, yellow cornmeal, with corn kernels or without, ad infinitum. I am partial to my grandmother’s buttermilk cornbread recipe. She used Tenda-Bake White Self-Rising Cornmeal, a little Crisco, some buttermilk, an egg, and love. She would get this amazing crust on her cornbread – it was so good. I haven’t been able to achieve that – yet!

She used a vintage cast iron pan. Never washed – just rinsed and washed out. It was perfectly seasoned and non-stick. I recently got a Lodge Cast Iron Pan which worked really well for my first time making cornbread in the new oven. You need to get the oven nice and hot. The recipe on the cornmeal bag said 400 degrees. I didn’t want to go higher than that. Anyway, you grease the pan with Crisco and I added a little more in the middle of the pan. Put the pan in the oven as it warms and when it’s reached temperature, you pour in the mixture. Check out the sizzle:

Then you cook the cornbread according to the time for the size of your pan. …then enjoy! I warmed up a bowl of Annie’s Organic Chicken Noodle Soup. It’s great if you haven’t yet tried it!

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