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Fresh Corn Cornbread

Photograph by Matt Armendariz

This is your old-fashioned cornbread made insanely moist and delicious. It is the oppo­site of dry, and can really stand on its own without needing to be slathered with butter. This recipe is wildly versatile. Use fresh corn if you can; if it’s not in season, you don’t need it. For a fun jalapeño Cheddar version, increase the salt to 2 tsp, omit the honey, add ½ cup/120 g grated Cheddar, 2 jalapeños, finely chopped, and 2 tbsp chopped parsley. Take it any direction you please. The honey glaze is optional; if you go in a more savory direction, I would omit it. If you are making this cornbread for use in our Cornbread Pudding (page 164), omit the fresh corn and reduce the sugar to 6 tbsp/60 g.

RECIPE: Fresh Corn Cornbread

Yields sixteen 2-in/5-cm squares

Ingredients

  • 6 tbsp/85 g unsalted butter
  • ½ cup + 1 tbsp/110 g sugar
  • 1¾ tsp kosher salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup/160 g cornmeal
  • ¾ cup + 2 tbsp/100 g all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup/30 g whole-wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup/120 ml whole milk
  • 1 cup/240 ml buttermilk
  • ¾ cup/180 ml canola oil
  • 2 tbsp honey, plus ¼ cup/85 g for glazing (optional)
  • 1½ cups/365 g fresh corn kernels (about 2 cobs; optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F/180°C and grease an 8-by-8-in/20-by-20 cm pan.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, sugar, and salt on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Incorporate the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl well. Pause mixing and add the cornmeal, all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, and baking powder.
  3. With the mixer on low speed, pour in the milk, buttermilk, canola oil, and 2 tbsp honey and mix. This is a very loose batter. Small lumps of butter are no problem, but avoid any lumps of flour. If you see them, mix a little longer or work them out with your fingers.
  4. Fold in the corn, if in season; if not, omit.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Do not overbake!
  6. If you are choosing to glaze, slightly warm the ¼ cup/85 g honey in a small saucepan and lightly brush the top of the warm cake.

This is best served the day it’s made but keeps, wrapped well, at room temperature, for up to 2 days.

Recipe via Huckleberry: Stories, Secrets, and Recipes From Our Kitchen

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