Vermont Maple Syrup Corn Bread

This cornbread is perfect with chili, but also compliments any hearty soup or stew. The maple syrup adds richness without making it too sweet. Takes about an hour to prepare, serves 6-8.

Dry Ingredients:
1 cup corn meal (medium ground is best)
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt

Wet Ingredients:
1 large egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil + 1 Tbsp.
1/2 cup Vermont maple syrup (or substitute honey or Grandma’s molasses)
1 & 1/2 cups milk or soymilk

Add the tablespoon of vegetable oil to a 10-inch cast iron frying pan that has at least a 2-inch lip on it. Put this in your cold oven and preheat to 350° F.

In a small bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. In a large bowl, scramble the egg, then whisk in the oil. Whisk in the maple syrup next, and when that is combined stir in the milk. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, and whisk gently just until combined. Small lumps are fine.

When oven and frying pan are heated, carefully remove the hot pan from the oven and pour in the batter, then gently place this back in the oven (on the middle oven rack). Bake for 35 minutes and check for doneness – if a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean it’s done, if it’s gooey it needs more time. Then remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving. Makes 8 generous pieces.

Alternate method: distribute batter evenly in an oiled or lined 12-space muffin tin. Check for doneness at about 20-25 minutes.