Last weekend we had a houseguest, it was one of our friends that recently moved back to our area from Portland. We were happy to get to spend some time with him and he was nice enough to bring us some delicious boudin and cracklins from Don’s Specialty Meats in Carencro, LA. It so happened that I was making my Meaty White Bean Stew with Collards (try it, delicious!) and thought some cracklin’ cornbread would be the perfect side dish.
I’ve learned the trick to really good cornbread is to heat your oil in your cast iron skillet while you’re mixing the rest of the ingredients, then pour that oil into the batter, mix it really quickly and while the skillet is still piping hot, pour the batter in. Makes it so crisp and wonderful. The cornbread was demolished in no time at all!
Cracklin’ Golden Cornbread
1 cup enriched yellow corn meal
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk
cracklins, slightly smashed up
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
honey to drizzle over the top
Coat a cast iron skillet with the vegetable oil, making sure the sides are also well-coated. Place in the oven and preheat to 425 (with it in the oven). In a large bowl, mix together the corn meal, flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Add the milk and egg and mix well. Mix in the cracklins. Once the oven is preheated, carefully take out the skillet and pour the hot oil into the batter and quickly stir to incorporate. As quickly as you can, pour the batter into the skillet. You should hear a sizzle, that mean s you’ll have a great crust! Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Remove and place the butter pieces on top and drizzle honey over the top. Use a silicone basting brush and gently spread the butter and honey evenly over the top. Allow it to soak in a couple of minutes before cutting and serving.