Before moving to Austin, I had never heard of cornbread dressing, and the only cornbread I had ever made, was the kind from the little blue Jiffy box. Since I've been in Texas, though, it seems like every fall, you can't escape the innumerable mentions of cornbread dressing, recipes for cornbread dressing, and smell of cornbread baking in anticipation of being made into cornbread dressing. Needless to say, I've tried a few different versions of cornbread dressing, and while they may have been tasty, I couldn't help thinking that the dish would have been better if the building block of the dish, the cornbread, was better. It seems to me that the cornbread used is usually off, either too dry, too soggy, too sweet, or having too little corn flavor. So, I decided to experiment with cornbread recipes. Many of these were good, but something about each just wouldn't work for dressing. Finally, I decided to just create my own. This recipe is the result. It's slightly sweet, moist enough to eat alone, but dry enough to soak up soup, chili or bean likker. It also makes an awesome basis for cornbread dressing.
Christina's CornbreadJD was extremely excited about the cornbread, as he grew up eating it often, and to him, apparently, nothing is better than a bowl of "soup beans" and cornbread. So I made this meal for him. It's cubes of cornbread, covered with whole, slow cooked pinto beans, slow cooked collard greens cooked with a little alderwood smoked sea salt and sesame oil (to give it a sort of smoky oily flavor, like ham hocks or bacon), and sweet potatoes.
by Christina Terriquez
2 1/3 cups fine cornmeal
1 cups unbleached white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1/3 cup non-GMO corn oil
2-3 tablespoons agave nectar
2 tablespoons flax meal (ground flax seeds)
1/2 cup water
2 cups soy milk
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Preheat oven to 350° F.
Lightly oil a 13"x9" baking dish.
In a large bowl, sift dry ingredients together.
In a blender or food processor, blend corn kernels, oil, agave nectar, flax meal and water until smooth. Add soy milk and vinegar and let rest for 5 minutes.
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Pour into prepare baking dish and bake until a toothpick comes out of the center clean.
This can be frozen in air tight bags for up to a month, though it will dry out a bit.