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Herb Corn Bread

Serves: Makes 1 (9- by 5-inch) loaf

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup medium-grind cornmeal (yellow or white)
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large shallot, very finely chopped
  • ¾ cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted


Procedures:

This might be a simple quick bread, but the addition of fresh herbs takes it to a whole new level. Don’t substitute dried herbs here—they won’t give you the dynamic flavor that fresh ones offer.

Preheat the oven to 350°F and position an oven rack in the center. Lightly coat a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan with melted butter or canola oil spray and line with a piece of parchment paper that extends 1 inch beyond the edge of both sides of the pan. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and pepper to blend well. Add the shallot, corn kernels, thyme, sage and parsley. Whisk again to blend everything thoroughly.

In a second medium bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the half-and-half and eggs. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the liquid ingredients into the well, then add the melted butter. Use a whisk to gently combine the ingredients, stirring just until the batter is homogenous and there are no patches of egg or flour. Don’t overmix or the corn bread may be tunneled with holes.

Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until the center of the bread feels firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a rack and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes before turning it out of the pan (It may also be left in the pan to cool completely.). Peel off the parchment paper and cut into slices, or crumble for stuffing.

by Sur La Table & Andrews McMeel Publishing, Simple Comforts

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