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Hot-Water Cornbread

Oxmoor House
Hands-on time 21 mins
Total time 21 mins
Yield Makes 8 patties
Prepare this cornbread at the last minute so you can serve it piping hot.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white cornmeal
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3/4 to 1 1/4 cups boiling water
  • Vegetable oil
  • Softened butter

How to Make It

  1. Combine cornmeal and next 3 ingredients in a bowl; stir in half-and-half and 1 tablespoon oil. Gradually add boiling water, stirring until batter is the consistency of grits.

  2. Pour oil to a depth of 1/2 inch into a large heavy skillet; place over medium-high heat. Scoop batter into a 1/4-cup measure; drop into hot oil, and fry, in batches, 3 minutes on each side or until golden. Drain well on paper towels. Serve immediately with softened butter.

  3. Note: Stone ground (coarsely ground) cornmeal requires more liquid.

  4. Country Ham Hot-Water Cornbread: Stir in 1 to 2 cups finely chopped country ham after adding boiling water.

  5. Bacon-Cheddar Hot-Water Cornbread: Stir in 8 slices cooked and crumbled bacon, 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, and 4 minced green onions after adding boiling water.

  6. Southwestern Hot-Water Cornbread: Stir in 1 seeded and minced jalapeño pepper; 1 cup Mexican cheese blend; 1 cup frozen whole kernel corn, thawed; and 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro after adding boiling water.

  7. Baked Hot-Water Cornbread: Omit skillet procedure. Pour 1/3 cup vegetable oil into a 15- x 10-inch jellyroll pan, spreading to edges. Drop batter as directed onto pan. Bake at 475° for 12 to 15 minutes. Turn cakes, and bake 5 more minutes or until golden brown.