Cornbread Patties…

DB7A8595-A4AF-4EAE-A968-756E7AC144A4Even though Cornbread and Biscuits are made in every region, we Southerners always think ours are the best! Biscuits seem to be the higher culinary art compared to Cornbread’s rustic texture. And the truth is, Cornbread has it’s roots in poverty, yet often graces the finest tables.  French trained Southern Chef Virginia Willis said it best:

 ‘…cornbread and barbeque are close to religion in the South… cornbread was the primitive Baptist to the Episcopalian biscuit, the all night tent revival to the prayer luncheon.’

Give Southerners a sack of cornmeal and- if they’ve lived here  more than a generation or two… they’ll have at least a half dozen variations that are based on the simple recipe for Cornbread. There’ll be no looking up recipes, it will be second nature as the Southern cook will know exactly which one to use for which meal.

  • Onion studded Hushpuppies are perfect with seafood,
  • Slender Corn Sticks seem to finish a big pot of chili or savory beef stew,
  • Long Pans of Cornbread Dressing must reside alongside a baked hen or roasted turkey…
  • a Pone of Cornbread goes with almost anything, though is true alchemy with our Barbeques,  Chicken and Dumplings and makes our Southern Vegetable Plates unforgettable.

It’s the lowly and quick Cornbread Patties which seem to enhance big steaming bowls of Vegetable Soup, Potato Soup or simple Lima Beans with true bliss.  Just a quick change in the amount of liquid to our regular Cornbread Batter, a spatula and a bit of oil heated in a Cast Iron Skillet as hot as the Devil’s Doorknob and before you know it…you’ll have a golden pile of Cornbread Patties! Here’s how you make ’em…5D35CC49-7912-42F0-BC0C-B9A7CE65F311

Camellia’s Cottage Cornbread Patties

  • In a mixing bowl combine 1 1/2 half cups of White Self Rising Cornmeal, 1 large egg whisked, enough water or milk to make a batter similar in texture to pancake batter except maybe thinner.
  • Vegetable Oil for frying (just enough to cover the bottom of the skillet)- these are not deep-fried!
  • Heat oil until very hot, with a small ladle pour batter into approximately 3 inch rounds.
  • Fry until there are bubbles around the edges of rounds and batter is set, carefully flip over and fry until golden brown, drain on paper towels.
  • Serve as soon as possible.  These are better when they are hot and crisp with a dab of butter.  Makes 18-20 small patties.

Now, I must say- I never heard Cornbread Patties called Johnny Cakes or Hoe Cakes (which I think of as a Yankee version with a heavier batter, y’all ) but I have heard Cornbread Patties called Fried Corn Pones. Now, bless your heart, call ’em whatever you want to, just don’t add one grain of sugar- these are meant to be savory!55E12AA3-EA48-4B2B-8305-4306291A8F49

The day I made mine, I sautéed some chopped baked ham and onion in a bit of bacon drippings, then steamed the fresh baby limas. Served warm in a bowl with cherry tomatoes, a baked sweet potato alongside and a sweet onion cut so thin you could see through the slices were extra good with these crispy little Cornbread Patties!

8DDA806A-5CC8-46C3-AE58-7BC4CC9F5616Oh my, I hope you’ll try a batch and substitute them for plain soda crackers when you make a big pot of soup this Fall!

Love y’all, Camellia

*Chef Virginia Willis is the author of a wonderful cookbook aptly named Bon Appetit, Y’all and has her own version of Cornbread Patties which she calls Cornmeal Griddle Cakes

*Photographs are obviously mine

31 thoughts on “Cornbread Patties…

  1. Looks absolutely delicious Brenda! I have not heard of self rising cornmeal at all. With my Slovenian/Austro Hungarian roots, I grew up eating polenta which is the yellow cornmeal. I somehow suspect this would not make the same. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for this advice Brenda. I shall definitely be on the look out for this when we shop closer to the capital city. We live in the country you see, so that means limited range. The biscuits look delicious.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Haven’t met a cornbread I didn’t like (except for those dang sweet ones they serve up here). Call them what you will but don’t sugar them up! When it’s sweet, it’s a corn muffin which is a breakfast food!

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  3. Love this! ‘Cast Iron Skillet as hot as the Devil’s Doorknob’! I have never been a fan of cornbread, rather prefer the yeasty/sourdough-type of bread. And I hate to say this on here, but something I really enjoyed while we lived in Texas was spoon bread. It had a sweet taste to it, and I haven’t found the same flavor anywhere. But my family loves corn anything, and this recipe looks really yummy!

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    1. Thank you Deborah! yes, I do love to use colorful but PG language! 🙂 Southern milled flour -back when we couldn’t get any different is made of softer wheat and didn’t do as well with yeast.. thus we have a culture of quick breads but I too, love yeast breads! and this is interesting to me- white corn was grown more extensively in the south, with yellow corn grown elsewhere… therefore you will see white corn, white grits, white cornmeal- in old southern cooking.. Now, about that spoonbread- sugar is often added to spoonbread b/c of the naturally sweet flavor of fresh corn! And since it is not a ‘true’ bread but rather more like a casserole, yes you will find sugar added to it and I certainly don’t have a problem with it!! yum… I think sugar added to cornbread batter disguises the flavor- as I said ‘eating more like a cookie than a soda cracker’ These little cornbread patties are also a great vehicle for other things and made ‘silver dollar’ size can be frozen and later made for cocktail party food with the addition of shrimp or crab or even sour cream and caviar!! As always thanks for stopping by!

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  4. I could eat corn bread in its various iterations 3 times a day. These are particularly good with chili and soups, like you said. Thanks for the bow to our simple and lovely cornmeal and your delicious writing.

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  5. These look DELICIOUS!! I will try this recipe soon! And I’m right there with you on the sweet cornbread. I had never heard of such until I was well into adulthood and ate a meal at a friend’s house. Her mother cooks great food but I thought there was a mistake somewhere with the cornbread!

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  6. Oh my lord these look absolutely delicious I simply must make these! At my house we usually make a whole cast iron skillet of cornbread whenever we have soup beans, but I may try to convince the chef to try these out at least once 🙂 thank you for sharing your recipes!

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