I have an eensie weensie addiction to eBay and Etsy lately. Okay, maybe not just lately. Okay, maybe I’ve had this addiction for a long time, but I’m coming CLEAN today with you. It started with active wear that I buy online. Yes, I have a collection of tops and bottoms that I have literally worn out since I started working out at the gym. From yoga tops to Zumba gear – I have it ALL.
Active wear is a thing of the past now since I started food blogging almost 2 years ago……2 years ago?? Oh my gawd. I can’t believe it’s been 2 years! Along with food blogging and photography go PROPS. Props of any kind that look cool in a shot. I’m hooked on vintage bakeware, cooking utensils and tableware.
Basically, anything that looks old and crappy is acceptable. I’ve even got friends and relatives bringing me their junk and you know what? It looks amazing in food shots. So, one day I was scrolling through Etsy and I came upon this old cast iron cornbread muffin pan. It looked like something I could definitely add to my every growing collection of sh*%t I don’t need but really want.
Oh and when the FedEx person comes to my door and my husband signs for the package, he always phones me to let me know that I have a delivery which most likely contains someone else’s garbage.
I excitedly opened my most recent delivery and inside the package was this beautiful and very heavy pan. The moment I laid eyes on it I knew that a recipe was A BREWIN’ in my head. Cornbread muffins with a twist.
I took my pan and carefully coated it TWICE with cooking spray (yes twice). Then proceeded to make the batter, which contained a mixture of both sweet and savoury ingredients. Holy YUM. These were not only going to be good, they would also be the purdiest muffins this side of the Mississippi.
I popped them into the oven and waited.
As soon as my oven timer went off, I was chomping at the bit to get these out of the pan and photograph them, only……….they didn’t exactly come out too easily. In fact, they were an absolute and utter disaster. The majority of the muffin stuck in the crevices and I ended up scraping them out with my finger. Do these look like little flowers to you? No. Were they good? Yes. Does this pan suck? BIG TIME.
Moral of the story here? Not all props are created equal OR in my case, I think I did something wrong.
- 2 cups finely ground cornmeal, divided - *do not use coarse or white, they will turn out yucky
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1¼ teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese (set aside ¼ cup for topping)
- 1¼ cups whole milk
- 1 cup plain yogurt or sour cream ( I used Greek yogurt because that's what I had on hand)
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons organic honey
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- Chopped parsley for garnish
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin (I used paper liners and the muffin came out much better).
- In a medium bowl, whisk together 1½ cups of the cornmeal, the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the remaining ½ cup cornmeal and the milk. Microwave for 1½ minutes, then whisk thoroughly and continue to microwave, whisking every 30 seconds, until thickened to a batter-like consistency. This takes about 1 to 3 additional minutes. [Note: If you do not have a microwave, you can do this in a saucepan on the stove top.]
- Whisk in the cheese, yogurt or sour cream, melted butter,sugar and honey until combined, then whisk in the eggs. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture until thoroughly combined (the batter will be very thick - don't worry about this).
- Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups.
- Top each muffin with the remaining cheese.
- Bake until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 13 to 17 minutes, rotating the muffin tin halfway through baking. Let the muffins cool in the muffin tin on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove muffins from the muffin tin and let cool 5 minutes longer. Serve warm or at room temperature. Optional to garnish with chopped parsley.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, (like this ever happens) or wrapped in plastic wrap, placed in a freezer bag and frozen for up to 2 months. These are great served with chili, by the way.