Spoonbread is one of my family's favorite recipies. You know when normal people make sweet potato casserole for holidays; well, we make spoonbread. Sweet, with syrup or honey, or savory, with chives and bacon it is a simple easy and fun dish.
Even more fun, though, are the variations in wednesday's S.F. Chronicle:
In its purest form, spoonbread is one of several cornbread incarnations, this one made casserole-style to be served with - you guessed it - a spoon. Its light texture comes from whipped egg whites and sometimes baking powder. Yellow or white cornmeal, softened butter, and milk or another liquid are the only other ingredients required to complete the dish, and this base recipe - best slathered with butter, of course - is often served as a side dish for poultry, beef or pork.
Much like a new twist on an old fashion, spoonbread is easily updated to reflect today's trends. That might mean homing in on what's available at local farmers' markets for additional ingredients to create a seasonal dish like green garlic, spring onion and Gruyere cheese spoonbread. The pungent aromatics lend a savoriness that makes this go well with a seasonal salad.
There's a basic spoonbread recipe, and 5 Variations:
--Strawberry Spoonbread with Strawberry-Rhubarb Compote
--Green Garlic, Spring Onion & Gruyere Cheese Spoonbread
--Asparagus & Herb Spoonbread with Feta Cheese
--Roasted Poblano Pepper, Sweet Potato & Monterey Jack Spoonbread
--Maple-Glazed Bacon Spoonbread
(Photos, from article by Craig Lee)