Let's make corn bread. Before I moved to Texas, I never had it in my life. Since moving here, there are so many occasions for it including Thanksgiving stuffing. Who knew? David always insists on cornbread dressing. That is another thing.
Back East, it was always stuffing for the turkey. Here it is called dressing, it has to be made with bread that is baked with corn and it doesn't go in the turkey. It goes in a 9 by 13 pan to be eaten as a side dish. Texans do Thanksgiving so differently than New Yorkers do.
As I write this, it is the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. I thought maybe this year, we would have an old fashioned, back to New York stuffing but my husband informed me that would not be happening and that he requires corn bread stuffing again this year. In order to make good dressing, you have to bake a pan of corn bread and then cut it up and let it dry.
Let's make a cast iron skillet full of corn bread for Thanksgiving dressing. I have been making this particular bread for over 35 years. It is good just to eat with butter, as a base for a pot of beans or chili, and as dried bread cubes for the all important Thanksgiving dressing. You will need:
Preheat your oven to 450° and spray a 10 inch cast iron skillet with Pam or grease with some Crisco. (If you are going to make this in Texas, you will find that Texans prefer it baked in cast iron skillets so you had better get some cast iron skillets in various sizes.)
Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix together hard and fast for 30 seconds. You don't want to overbeat the batter. Pour the batter into the greased skillet. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the bread is golden brown. If you are going to eat this, cut it while warm and put butter on it. It is delicious with melted butter.
If you will be using this bread for Thanksgiving stuffing, let it cool and then cut it into one inch cubes.
If you are going to make the corn bread dressing recipe below, you will need to at least double this recipe.
This is the corn bread dressing that graces our Thanksgiving table most years. David and our son, Matt, love it.
You will need:
In a large skillet, pour and heat some olive oil. Add the celery, onion, and mushrooms and saute over medium heat, until tender. Add in the rest of the ingredients.
Pour into greased 9 by 13 inch baking pan and bake in preheated oven at 400° for about 20 minutes until warm.
This is so tasty. If you have never tried your dressing or your stuffing with corn bread, give it a try. We think you will love it!
This recipe has a more cake like consistency and, best of all, there is no sugar in it. It does not crumble the way many do.
You will need:
Preheat your oven 425°. With 1 tablespoon of the melted shortening, grease a 10 inch cast iron skillet and place in the oven to heat up.
In a large bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using a whisk, mix together.
In a second bowl, whisk the rest of the shortening with the buttermilk and the egg until well blended.
Now add the liquid mixture into the bowl of dry ingredients and combine until all wet but do not stir thoroughly.
Remove the cast iron skillet from the oven and pour the batter into the skillet.
Put the skillet back in the oven and reduce the heat to 375°. Bake for about 24 minutes, until golden brown. Start watching it after 20 minutes to make sure you don't overcook it.
This is best served hot with butter and a touch of honey! Hint: Mix a few drops of honey in with a few tablespoons of honey and spread on the bread while warm. Delicious!!!
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