If a French souffle moved to Georgia and married a pan of cornbread, their offspring would be this classic Southern spoonbread. Tender, creamy and dead-easy to make, you should have this in your repertoire when you want a side dish for a bowl of vegetarian chili or a mess of collard greens.
You can take this basic recipe and up the ante with more savory ingredients like caramelized onions, chilis or smoked paprika, or pass sorghum or maple syrup on the side to go sweet.
The most common way of serving spoonbread is in a single large casserole, but I like it better in individual ramekins. Whichever way you go, be sure to stop baking it the moment it is puffed up and the eggs are set. You want it to remain soft and custardy, not turn into a dense cornbread.
Vegetarian and gluten-free
Makes 8 individual side-dish portions
10 minutes active, 30 total
- 4 tablespoons melted butter + more unmelted for ramekins
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 1 cup medium-grain stone ground cornmeal
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/3 cups buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup corn kernels (frozen is fine)
- Preheat the oven to 375 and butter eight 6-ounce ramekins. Place the ramekins on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Combine the melted butter, honey, salt and cornmeal in a medium bowl. Stir in 1 1/3 cups boiling water and allow to rest 5 minutes.
- Beat the eggs in a small bowl and whisk in the buttermilk. Sprinkle the baking powder over the cornmeal mixture, then pour the egg mixture over it. Add the corn kernels. Mix everything together, which should give you a rather liquid batter.
- Ladle 1/2 cup of batter into each ramekin, being sure to stir a little as you go so it doesn't separate. Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until lightly browned and just barely set in the center. Allow to cool 5 minutes and serve.