Are you ready for a revolution your cornbread? (iStock)
Buy ingredients for cornbread should entail more than walking into the grocery store and blindly pick a bag that says “corn flour” from the shelves.
According to Bon Appetit’s senior food editor, Rick Martinez, one size fits all is not a rule that applies for corn meal. The differences in grain size could revolutionize (or destroy) your bread.
Corn flour is available in a range of gravel sizes, ranging from fine to medium to coarse.
Cornbread is supposed to be a texture of experience—it is half of the reason that you eat instead of soft and elastic wheat bread, so you might as well make it count. In place of most recipes that are good for about 50% wheat flour and 50% corn flour, Martinez likes to lean a little bit closer to 60 to 70% corn flour, where the wheat flour gives the bread a subtle, fresh lift.
Go big or go home?
If you are going all out for Thanksgiving, cornmeals of the beloved supermarket brands are the reliable rocks on that years and years of holiday traditions have rested. But live a little. Martinez says this is the time to splurge on a beautiful, stone-ground corn flour from Anson Mills or Geechie Boy. The taste is often more lively. The texture of the corn grains can be more varied, and gives the bread an extra dimension.
Not out of the way of colorful corn
Good coarse grind corn meal compared to the fine things is like the difference between steel cut oats and rolled oats—you get all of these wonderful texture in every bite. Sometimes, that the lover of the corn flour can even add a number of new colors for the comparison. Purple! Red!!! All the beautiful colors!
The skillet cornbread in The Dabney, in Washington, D. C., is a shining example. It has a grainy texture, thanks to good stone ground corn flour from Anson Mills, where each bite is loaded with maximum impact.
In other words, to pay attention to your corn meal is worth. Think of it as one of the few times in size, shape and type is actually not negligible.