Sometimes, all it takes is a simple little ingredient addition to make an old standby recipe a little more exciting.
This past weekend I made chili and cornbread for a small get together, and to liven up the cornbread I added some spice into the batter and shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese and sliced jalapenos(from a jar) to the top. I only did half the pan that way, so people who don't do spicy wouldn't have to do without.
It was a hit! Even people that I did not not expect to eat it, did so. And enjoyed it. Woot.
I used what I had on hand, but in the future I see myself using some smokey, creamy cheese and fresh sliced peppers as opposed to the jarred kind. And maybe some chopped bell pepper and onion in the batter itself. And bacon. Good Lord, yes, bacon!
After eating cornbread this way, I'm not sure The Husband will let me make it plain ever again.
And why should he? I mean, just look at it. Which side looks more appealing? The plain one or the cheesey, spicy, gooey yummy one?
I altered a recipe from a local family cookbook(Home Cooking With The Helmuth Family) to suit my needs.
Here's what I used
2 Cups cornmeal
2 Cups whole wheat flour
5 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 Cup natural sugar
2 Cup almond milk(or dairy milk of course, I just didn't have any on hand)
1/2 Cup vegetable oil( I use Cookwell BAKE oil)
Shredded cheese(dairy or vegan!)
You just mix your batter, add seasoning to taste(I used about a teaspoon or so of each spice), add a thin layer of cheese to the top of the batter, a layer of jalapenos, then bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a greased 9x13 or 10x14 pan at 350 degrees. Then place pan on a cooling rack and top with a little more cheese. That's if you want soft melty cheese on top. If you want the cheese a little more crispy, just add a little under the jalapenos before you bake and refrain from adding more after it comes out of the oven.
The leftovers, if you have any, make for a perfectly respectable breakfast the next day.
Or lunch. Or snack. Or dessert.