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Tex-Mex Cornbread with Cheese & Green Chiles

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Serves eight.

This is also delicious with sautéed onion or red bell pepper added.

  • 5oz. (1 cup) stone-ground yellow cornmeal
  • 4-1/2 oz. (1 cup) unbleached flour
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbs. sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil; more for the pan
  • 1-1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1 oz. (2 Tbs.) butter
  • 1 cup grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese (4 oz.)
  • Fresh kernels cut from two ears of corn (about 1-1/2 cups)
  • 3 Tbs. finely diced fresh serrano or jalapeño chiles

Heat the oven to 375°F. In a bowl, mix the cornmeal, flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, sugar, oil, and butter­milk. Coat a 10-inch cast-iron skillet with oil and set it over medium heat. Add the butter. As the skillet heats, quickly stir together the dry and wet ingredients in a bowl, using just enough strokes to combine. Don’t beat or whisk. Stir in the cheese, corn, and chiles.

When the butter has melted and the pan is quite hot, scrape the batter into it; the batter should ­sizzle as it goes into the pan. Immediately transfer the skillet to the oven. Bake until light brown around the edges, about 25 minutes. Cut in wedges and serve warm.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 340; Fat (g): fat g 18; Fat Calories (kcal): 160; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 7; Protein (g): protein g 10; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 5; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 37; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 6; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 500; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 50; Fiber (g): fiber g 3;

Photo: Mark Thomas

I've probably made this cornbread 100 times or more since it was first printed back in 1997. It never fails. I like the nice crisp crust you get with the cast iron skillet. Only change I make is to use pepper jack cheese, and I usually toss in a half cup or so of chopped cilantro.

Since we are "empty nesters", I halved this recipe, and baked the cornbread in a 6-inch cast iron skillet. While halving an egg is pretty inexact, I just whisked it in a measuring cup, and added about half of it to the rest of the ingredients. I used 1/2 tablespoon of butter, and 1/2 tablespoon of bacon grease to grease this smaller skillet. My husband and I thought this was terrific! And, happily, we did have some leftovers which I wrapped tightly, and froze.

I doubled the recipe and didn't do the skillet. I used a 9x13 baking pan; baked for about 30 minutes and it was perfect. I used about half the amount of chiles and corn called for (I used frozen corn and white whole wheat flour). Good flavor and texture.

This is wonderful! When I made it, I didn't have a cast iron skillet, and even without the wonderful browning of the cast iron, it came out perfectly. I have since bought a cast iron skillet and can't wait to try it again. The flavors and texture are excellent. Yum.

Cornbread with green chiles contributes mild heat. Cornbread with red bell peppers is very sweet. Excellent either way.

Having grown up in New Mexico, I'm always looking for recipes which contain green chili. This recipe is easy to prepare and heavenly to eat! I used a 12 inch cast iron saute pan which worked perfectly fine; however, the cooking time was reduced. This cornbread is very delicate and moist. I froze the leftover slices on a platter before putting them into individual plastic freezer bags. The recipe suggests enough for 8 people. I would say 6-8.

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