Members of the Prairie Dog Chapter of the Lone Star Dutch Oven Society, and friends, will be teaching scouts how to bake golden cornbread at the Longhorn Council Mountain Man Rendezvous Jan 2-4, 2014. We are prepared to work with 40 scout troops as they bake cornbread in 12″ camp Dutch ovens. This is going to be a lot of delicious fun!
Here’s the shopping list: 10 pounds of sugar, 1 gallon of canola oil, 25 pounds of cornmeal, 25 pounds of all purpose flour, 1 pound of salt, 7 tins of baking powder, 2 boxes of baking soda, 14 dozen eggs, 5 gallons of whole milk, 5 gallons of buttermilk, and 20 sticks of butter. We are going to be busy!!
Today, I did a test-run in our urban-kitchen to see if the recipe will work and to make adjustments if needed. Here is the recipe:
2 cups cornmeal
2 cups all purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 1/3 cup whole milk
1 1/3 cup buttermilk
4 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
- Pour about 4 tablespoons oil to cover the bottom of a 12” camp Dutch oven with a thin, even coating of oil.
- Preheat the Dutch oven 425 degrees Fahrenheit by placing 21 hot charcoals on top and 10 underneath.
- In a large bowl, mix cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In another bowl, beat eggs, milk, and buttermilk together.
- Create a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour egg mixture into the middle, then gently fold until almost combined and add butter. The less the mixture is stirred, the better. Less is better!
- Pour batter into preheated Dutch oven. Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit until top is golden brown and lightly cracked and edges have pulled away from the side of the Dutch oven, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Transfer to wire rack to let cool slightly for 5 to 10 minutes, and serve.
Beating the eggs, milk, and buttermilk seperately is a very important step. This helps prevent overbeating the cornbread batter. Beat those eggs and milk as much as you want to! But after you fold the egg mixture into the cornmeal, hold back!
This is THE most important tip to making a light and flaky cornbread – gently fold the egg mixture into the cornmeal. The goal is to incorporate the dry ingredients with the egg mixture with as FEW turn of the spoon as possible. Don’t worry if pockets of dry ingredients are still peeking through. Exercise restraint Scout! The less the mixture is stirred, the better – I promise!
Next step is to pour the batter into a HOT Dutch oven.
Check out the bottom! Crunchy, golden… perfect!
And check out the empty Dutch oven. Not a single bit of cornbread sticking. Nada! Cleaning up is so simple. Quick wipe with a paper towel and it is ready for another batch of cornbread!
This recipe makes 14 to 16 servings. Too many servings?? Cut all ingredients by half and prepare an 8″ camp Dutch oven.