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Hometown Foodie – The Five Rules of Southern Cornbread

#foodie-all – by Ellen Britt

Someone asked me the other day why I always refer to making cornbread “Southern” style and to explain just what that is, so here are my 5 Rules for Southern Cornbread:

One – Use yellow stone ground cornmeal for your cornbread. I know some folks fuss over using white or yellow meal, but here in Georgia it’s mostly yellow that wins the day.

Two – Do not use a bunch of sugar in your cornbread. Cornbread is NOT cake, and us Southerners would like to keep it that way. A teaspoon or so of sugar, used to amplify other flavors is fine, but the cornbread itself should not taste sweet.

Three – Use full fat buttermilk as the liquid in your cornbread, along with eggs. The tang of the buttermilk gives it a great flavor and the acid interacts with the baking soda to help the cornbread rise.

Four – Bake your cornbread in a very hot oven in a preheated cast iron skillet. The heat retention capacity of cast iron is superb for giving your cornbread a nice crust on the bottom.

Five – Cut and serve the cornbread immediately after you pull it from the oven. Hot cornbread is the rule!

There you have it…four rules for great Southern cornbread. Let’s eat y’all…!