Lethargic Summer Hunger
I’m a big advocate of salads & soups, especially in summertime when it’s warm, you’re lethargic & just craving something fresh, cooling & light. Sometimes though, soup needs a partner, salad becomes a side, hunger prevails & something more substantial is required to banish the pangs.
It’s no small secret that I undeniably favour all things dough, so naturally my solution when it comes to expanding meals is to add a slice, a crusty roll, a wedge of sourdough. However, this is not exactly the most convenient of options at times, lacking clairvoyant skills (unless you count the ability to predict burrito boys eating choices), it can be difficult to predict the hunger pangs & set aside 3 hours to rise, prove & bake your own bread. The solution? A quick bread.
I was intrigued when I first spotted cornbread at St Nicholas Market in Bristol, a great little hive of street food & independent stall holders. I bought myself two wedges, with no accompaniment out of pure curiosity (& gluttony, having already consumed the equivalent of x2 lunches). Simple, moist, flavourful, I was sold.
Many experiments later, I arrived at my perfect version. The recipe truly is a simple one that can be ready at a moments notice, great for sharing. Chillies add flavour & a nice little kick making cornbread the perfect partner for salads, soups & barbeques.
- 280g polenta
- 85g plain flour
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 large egg
- 150ml whole milk
- 425ml buttermilk
- 1 1/2 tbps dried chilli flakes
(spring onions also work well if you’re not a fan of heat)
- Grease & line a 25×16 baking tin with baking parchment
- In a large bowl combine the polenta, flour, bicarbonate & chilli flakes
- In a jug, whisk together the egg, milk & buttermilk until thoroughly combined
- Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients & lightly fold the two together, don’t over mix (as if making muffins)
- Pour the mixture into the tin & bake at 190°C for 35-40 minutes, until golden & the bread springs back when gently prodded
- Cool the bread in its tin for 10 minutes before removing
(can be eaten still warm or cold)