Kick up your corn bread with some southwest flavorings and a hint of heat. This moist, citrusy version calls for fresh lime juice and zest. Aromatic cilantro infuses the batter and visually enlivens the bread. I like to add fresh corn kernels for texture and sweetness, white pepper and cayenne for spicy depth. Mini-corn molds make portioning easy, and will have everyone grabbing for their own ear. And don’t forget the honey butter, or you’ll miss the sweet-hot flavors that linger on your tongue… while you reach for another piece. 🙂
1 ½ cups corn meal
¾ cup white flour
⅓ cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons dried cilantro (if you prefer fresh cilantro, use only 1 teaspoon)
¼ teaspoon cayenne
¼ teaspoon white pepper
¾ cup milk
¼ cup corn oil
⅓ cup honey
1 lime (1 tablespoon juice, 1 tablespoon zest)
½ cup sweet corn kernels (about 1 ear)
6 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons honey
Preheat oven to 350°. In large bowl, mix together corn meal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cilantro, cayenne and white pepper. In separate bowl, mix together milk and eggs. Stir milk mixture into dry ingredients. Add corn oil, honey, lime juice and lime zest, mixing in well. Stir in corn kernels.
Spoon into greased 8×8-inch pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown, or until toothpick in center comes out clean. You can also use 2 cast iron mini-corn molds, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
To make Honey Butter, add softened butter to small bowl. Stir in honey and mix well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.