I made this recently for a community group dinner. My friend Jenny was preparing rice and beans so I thought cornbread might be a good side dish to bring. I was looking for a foolproof recipe so I turned to the experts at America's Test Kitchens.
My friends were all very complimentary about the corn bread but I really couldn't tell if they are being really nice or whether they really liked it. I personally thought it was a bit lacking in flavor. I wish there was more spice or saltiness to this. This spurred a renewed interest in cornbread for me and I tried a couple more recipes which I will share in the next posts. My apologies in advance for the cornbread overload.
This recipe resulted in a denser, more crumbly cornbread, which would be a good side to something hearty like chili or rice and beans. Next time I make this, I'd like to try to add some more jalapenos and more cheese and see if that helps.
Spicy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread
America's Test Kitchens
1 ½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 ⅓ sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup yellow cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
⅜ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
¾ cup frozen kernels thawed
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 medium jalapeno chili, chopped fine (cored and seeded)
Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray 8-inch square baking dish with non stick spray (or unsalted butter). Whisk flour, ¾ cup cheddar cheese, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, chopped jalapeno, cayenne pepper and salt in medium bowl until combined. Set aside.
In a food processor or blender, process brown sugar, thawed corn kernels, and buttermilk until combined about 5 seconds. Add eggs and process until well combined (corn lumps will remain) about 5 seconds longer.
Using a spatula, make well in center of dry ingredients; pour wet ingredients into well.
Begin folding dry ingredients into wet, giving mixture only a few turns to barely combine; add melted butter and continue folding until dry ingredients are just moistened.
Pour batter into prepared baking dish; smooth surface with spatula.
Top with the remaining shredded cheese.
Bake until deep golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25-35 minutes.
Cool on wire rack for ten minutes; invert cornbread onto wire rack, then turn right side up and continue to cool until just warm. Cut into pieces and serve.