This cornbread is the counterpart of yesterday’s veggie soup. Since The Chef and I have spent all day trying to decide which variety of soup/gumbo/stew we will be making for New Year’s Day, this was a no-brainer side dish.
Jalapeno cornbread is a great for soups because it will work for sopping but also has enough of a spicy kick to cut through the dense corn-bready-ness (word. total word.).
Peg says the cornmeal in this recipe must
be Aunt Jemima Buttermilk
Martha Stewart. (Which is why I linked that Jemima example to Wal-Mart instead of K-Mart. Your lucrative deal with a giant discount store holds no water with us, Martha!)
Claire also reminds us that you have to heat up the tins before adding the batter so the bottoms of the muffins are crunchified. Word to you. And your mother.
2 cups cornmeal
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
3 tbsp veggie oil
3/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese
1 can creamed corn
chopped jalapenos (as many as you want)
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Mix together all ingredients. The batter should be easy to stir and smooth but not runny. If it’s too thick, add more buttermilk.
- Take muffin pan and put 1/2 cap of veggie oil in each tin. Put in the oven at 425 until smokey. (This is the non-negotiable step that makes the bread crunchy all the way around.)
- Take out, add mix and cook at 425 for approx. 45 min.
The Chef sent me this recipe months ago, and it stalled out in my Inbox because black beans – or beans of any kind, really – often bore the crap out of me.
But the more I started looking at it, the more intrigued I became. The Mexican seasonings, the chorizo, and the suggestion that you serve it alongside quail – arguably the most adorable and delectable of tiny game birds – finally changed my mind.
The Chef also mentioned this is one of his favorite recipes from the CIA Cookbook, and whether that means “Central Intelligence Agency” or “Culinary Institute of America” to you, it’s pretty badass either way.
1 lb dried black beans
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup chorizo sausage
2/3 cup yellow onion, diced medium
2 tbsp garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup cornmeal
- Soak bean overnight in enough cold water to cover them by 3 inches.
- Drain beans, place in a pot, and add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until beans are tender, about 45 minutes. Drain.
- Cook the chorizo over medium heat in a saute pan until the fat is rendered and the chorizo is slightly crispy. Add onions, garlic and jalapeno, and saute until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add the cumin and chili powder and saute until fragrant. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool.
- Combine beans, chorizo mixture, egg, cilantro, lime juice and salt. Mix well, mashing some of the beans to help keep the cake together.
- Form the mixture into 16 cakes, about 2 inches in diameter and 1/2 inch thick. Dust the cakes lightly with cornmeal.
- Preheat nonstick skillet to medium heat. Cook the cakes until heat through, about 4 to 6 minutes. The Chef says you’re gonna have to work in batches here, so be prepared to move quickly.
Serve these immediately (because these suckers are best hot), preferably with grilled quail and Coffee BBQ Sauce.
This is good, basic polenta recipe. You can substitute cream cheese for parmesan if you like. (Barrett, I don’t want to hear it about putting cream cheese in everything. The recipe said I could. And you’re not my real Dad anyway.)
1 quart chicken stock
1 1/2 cups finely ground cornmeal
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
3 tbsp butter
pinch sea salt
- In a large saucepan bring the chicken stock to a slow simmer.
- Quickly whisk the cornmeal into the stock and lower the temperature to keep it from splattering.
- Stir in the cream, Parmesan, butter, and salt. Serve with Mushroom Ragout or other topping of choice.
Polenta Recipe taken from m’boy Tyler Florence. The cream cheese is a suggestion from Hungry Memphis.