From “The New Mexico Slow Cooker Queen” article in the November 2017 issue.
Jalapeño Cornbread with Sorghum Butter
You can serve this with butter, but when time permits, I like a touch of sorghum butter, made with a molasses-like syrup that comes from a traditional Southern grain crop. You can use molasses if you prefer.
Serves 6 or more
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons stone-ground cornmeal
- 2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
- 2–3 fresh jalapeños, seeded and minced
- 6 ounces mild or medium Cheddar, grated (about 1 cups)
- 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons sorghum syrup or dark molasses
- Generously butter the inside of the slow cooker.
- Pour inch of water into it. Arrange a 3-inch biscuit cutter in the middle of the cooker, if you have it. Otherwise, roll up an 18-inch piece of aluminum foil from one of its long sides into a snake, then bend it into a coil to fit in the bottom of the cooker as a rack. The water should be below the top of the rack. Butter the inside of a quart soufflé dish or deep 6-inch cake pan.
- In a small bowl, stir together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt.
- With a whisk or an electric mixer, blend the butter and brown sugar in another, larger bowl until mixture is creamy and sugar is mostly dissolved. Add eggs, one at a time, then buttermilk, corn kernels, jalapeños, and cheese. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, beating just a few strokes until incorporated.
- Pour batter into the prepared dish and transfer it to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 2–3 hours, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. If cornbread seems underdone after 3 hours, take off the lid and cook for another 5–10 minutes, then check again.
- While the cornbread cooks, make sorghum butter. Whip it—or at least whisk it well—in a small bowl until thoroughly combined. Reserve at room temperature.
- When cornbread is done, set the pan on a baking rack to cool. When cool, cut it into wedges or squares in the size you wish. Serve with sorghum butter.