A classic southern cooking tradition -- spoonbread is typically known as a pudding-like bread that is eaten with a spoon, hence the name. My families delicious variation on spoonbread is a cross between cornbread and a souffle. It's light, yet rich and creamy. It uses whole-grain yellow cornmeal for maximum corn flavor, fine-ground cornmeal for a light and tender texture, and egg whites that have been beaten until stiff for lift. This surprisingly easy to make, tasty comfort food is the perfect accompaniment to any meal, and is especially good served alongside any braised meat smothered in gravy, spicy dishes and barbecues. It's great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. And, when leftovers are warmed up in the microwave with just a dab of real butter and a grind of fresh black pepper, it makes for a perfect snack.
Adjust oven rack to center position; heat oven to 350 degrees F. Using butter or solid vegetable shortening, lightly grease the inside of an 8-inch square glass baking dish; set aside. Separate eggs, placing yolks into a small bowl and whites into a medium-sized bowl. Cover whites and yolks; let stand to warm to room temperature.
In a heavy 3-quart saucepan over medium heat, scald milk, heating until bubbles form from around edges of pan. Reduce heat to low. Slowly stir in cornmeal, beat thoroughly with spoon and cook over low heat until cornmeal thickens and pulls away from the sides of the pan. Remove from heat, add butter, sugar, salt, baking powder and cayenne (if using), and beat well until butter has melted; set aside.
In a small bowl, beat egg yolks. Stir a 1/4 cup of the warm cornmeal mixture into the yolks (to temper them) then combine the egg yolk mixture with the rest of the cornmeal mixture. Mix until mixture is smooth and blended.
In a medium bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into cornmeal mixtue until just incorporated and no large white streaks remain. Turn batter into prepared baking dish and bake until puffed, golden and a skewer (or knife) inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 to 55 minutes. Serve hot with additional butter and honey, if desired.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Whole-grain cornmeal has a fuller flavor than regular cornmeal milled from degerminated corn. If you can't find fine-ground cornmal, you can make it yourself by processing regular medium-ground cornmeal in a blender or food processor until a fine powdery meal is achieved. If desired, you can substitute white cornmeal for the yellow...however, the bread will have a milder corn flavor.
Watch carefully towards the end of the baking time...don't over-bake and let the bread get dry. Also, take care to serve it warm from the oven to keep it from becoming too dense.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (193g)|
|Recipe Makes: 6|
|Calories from Fat: 228 (60%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 25.3g||34 %|
|Saturated Fat 11.7g||58 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 8.1g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 2.5g|
|Cholesterol 561.7mg||173 %|
|Sodium 598.9mg||21 %|
|Potassium 275.9mg||7 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 20.2g||6 %|
|Dietary Fiber 1.5g||6 %|
|Sugars, other 18.7g|
|Protein 18.5g||26 %|
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Calories per serving: 378
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