I moved to Texas mid-way through my junior year in high-school and lived there for seventeen years before my heart called me back to the mid-west where I was born.
What I remember most about traditional southern-style cooking include chicken-fried steak, fried okra, black-eyed peas, and cornbread. The okra and black-eyed peas were pretty good, but I didn’t care for the chicken-fried steak, and I found the cornbread to be dry, gritty and flavorless. Mind you; I was smart enough to know you never tell a Texan you don’t like their food.
But I’m a bread lover, so I was convinced there had to be a way to make cornbread enticing. So after a few tries, I found the flavor and texture I was looking for in this version made with buttermilk, Greek yogurt, and sour cream. Aside from the fact it also has cooked bacon and roasted jalapeño (how could I go wrong there?), it has just the right balance of moisture to the cornmeal, smokiness from the bacon, and a nice low heat from the peppers.
This cornbread would be the perfect companion to go along with my Heat-Jacked Chicken Tortilla Soup I posted a few weeks ago.
1 cup flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup cooked bacon, crumbled
2 jalapeños, roasted, seeded and diced
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1⁄4 cup minced green onion
1⁄4 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons baking powder
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
2) Combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
3) In another bowl, beat the egg with a whisk and then incorporate the yogurt, sour cream, buttermilk and butter into the egg.
4) Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until just moistened, creating a thick batter.
5) Stir the bacon, jalapeños, and green onions into the batter and pour the mixture into a pre-greased baking dish.
6) Sprinkle the cheese on top and place the pan in the oven. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.
7) Remove the pan from the oven and allow the bread to cool for 15 minutes. If you cut the bread when it’s too hot, it will crumble. Once cooled, cut the bread into squares and serve warm.