I literally cannot tell you how I came to have cornbread in my oven this weekend. I had some half-baked idea about lunches and bringing black beans to work for lunch, then I had this idea about stuffing, and then I don’t know, all of a sudden I was rummaging through the freezer looking for frozen corn and pulling out the polenta.
This recipe combines two things I couldn’t find otherwise: cornbread that includes frozen corn kernels as well as polenta, that coarser-ground cornmeal that’s used both for grits and in Italian cooking as a pasta alternative. It also has a delicious, crispy bottom and sides from being baked in a cast-iron skillet.
I added a drizzle of honey to my cornbread; that’s not strictly Southern, so if you prefer, you can omit it. You might also try making this with almond flour and a tablespoon or so of coconut flour, or your favorite gluten-free flour instead of the blend I used.
Whatever way you choose to make it, it would make a great side to your Thanksgiving feast — or, better yet, as the centerpiece in a batch of cornbread stuffing.
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cups polenta or grits
- 1/2 cup gluten-free flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups almond milk, unsweetened
- 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
- 1 Tbsp honey, if desired
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Pour oil into a cast-iron skillet. Place in oven for about 10 minutes, or until the oil is sizzling.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine dry ingredients. Add the egg, almond milk, corn and honey. Allow to set for a few moments or until it thickens slightly.
- Remove skillet from oven and immediately pour the hot oil into the batter. Stir until well-combined, then pour the batter into the hot skillet.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the edges look brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm, with butter and maybe a little extra drizzle of something sweet.