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Monday, March 12, 2012

Corny Jalapeño Skillet Corn Bread

Lately I've been hungry for some good old fashioned corn bread.  Before we moved to Costa Rica, I would cheat and make Corny Jalapeño Corn Bread in my cast iron skillet with 2 boxes of Jiffy Corn Bread Mix, some Jalapeño peppers and canned corn.  Guess what.... there is no Jiffy Corn Bread Mix on the grocery store shelves in Costa Rica.  I searched for recipes on the internet and finally found a couple of recipes I could use as a base.  I cobbled them together and this is the final recipe I came up with.  John loves it, says it's the best yet, and I'm happy to share it with you.

Ingredients: (makes 1 large 9”-10” skillet)
Dry Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1+1/3 cups cornmeal, preferably stone-ground (If you can't find cornmeal, you can grind your own in a blender using un-popped popcorn kernels, of just use Polenta.)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Wet Ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted or any good cooking oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1+1/4 cups milk (a little bit more or less; enough to make cake like batter)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 or 2 fresh Jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely minced. (If you use pickled Jalapeños you will need more, and they should be finely chopped)
  • 1 cup canned corn kernels
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
A cast iron skillet (if you do not have one, use a thick bottomed oven proof skillet

Preheat the oven to 400° F.

In a bowl, sift the all purpose flour with baking powder, black pepper and salt. Stir in the cornmeal.

In a separate bowl, whisk the milk, butter, honey and eggs. Add the melted butter and stir just until blended. Add the corn and jalapeño peppers.

Gradually stir in the dry flour mixture.

Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to the cast iron skillet and heat the skillet over the stove top or in the oven until the oil shimmers and is really hot. Remove skillet from the stove top or the oven and pour the batter into the hot skillet. When the batter is added to the hot skillet, it will sizzle loudly.

Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for about 25-35 minutes, or until the center springs back when gently pressed and a toothpick comes out clean. The cornbread should be golden brown and crispy on the edges.

Cooking Time: Approx. 30 minutes


  1. Looks wonderful! Can't wait to try this. Thanks for sharing. Teri

  2. Hello. Can you use the pre-cooked cornmeal? It's the only cornmeal I have found in Costa Rica.

    1. Yes, pre-cooked cornmeal or polenta will work for cornbread, but it will have more of a cake-like texture. I make my own cornmeal with popping corn kernels in a heavy duty blender. It takes a little work, because you have to keep straining out the fine cornmeal and re-grinding the bigger pieces it until you get your preferred consistency. This, to me, makes the best cornbread.


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