With the holiday weekend approaching, I thought I'd offer up a quick and easy potluck entree. If you have a favorite cornbread mix, use it and it's that much quicker to make. I made the cornbread from scratch because I have some yummy cornmeal to use up, but on busy nights there's no shame in grabbing a quick mix out of the pantry. I would still throw the corn in there even if you are using a mix...it just makes the meal a little more substantial. Lucky me, we received 3 little ears in our basket this week. Not enough to have it on the cob for everyone, but the perfect amount to add to the cornbread. Also, in looking back at the pictures, this dish is really begging for something green...avocado maybe...or a cilantro garnish?
This is the recipe for a 4 qt. baking dish, so that you will have PLENTY to share. When I'm cooking just for our family of four, I divide this recipe in half and prepare it in an 8" x 8" baking dish.
2 cups stone ground corn meal
2 cups unbleached whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup of sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup of canola oil
2 cups of milk
2 cups of fresh corn, cut off the cob or canned corn, drained well
2 tbsp sour cream
Grease a 4 qt, glass baking dish. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl add all dry ingredients and mix. Add oil and mix. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each. Add milk and mix just until wet. Incorporate corn and sour cream. Pour batter into baking dish, and place on the center rack of your oven. Bake for about 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Your cornbread should be golden and firm to the touch. While the cornbread is baking, follow the directions below.
1 tsbp butter or oil
1 1/2 cups of onion, diced
1 tbsp garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
3 15 oz. cans black beans, drained
1 10 oz. can of tomatoes and green chiles (mild, unless you're daring), drained
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Open the beans and drain them:
Then after the tomatoes/peppers are drained, sprinkle them on the top of your casserole. I always leave a portion of the dish without tomatoes for those people who have an aversion to cooked tomatoes. You could do the same with the onions if you wanted to. Finish it off by topping it with the shredded cheese.
In order to make the casserole, move your oven rack up a bit so that it's closer to the flame and turn the heat up to 450. We're trying to melt the cheese and heat the other ingredients, without baking the cornbread for too much longer so that it doesn't get too dry. Bake for 7-10 minutes, checking frequently to make sure you don't burn your cheese. When your cheese is as melty as you want it, then pull it out and serve warm. If you are taking this dish to a potluck to share, you might get it all layered up and then stick it in your host's' oven when you get there.
Avocado, cilantro, side salad, sour cream, salsa...