To me, corn is so versatile it's fascinating. The amount of things that you can turn corn into is insane. Corn gets turned into oil, meal, polenta, masa for tortillas, syrup, popcorn, the list is honestly endless. Around this time of the year, the corn ingredients that I normally have on hand are corn meal, polenta, and popcorn. They are super versatile and make for some delicious dishes that you personalize to make your own.
The first recipe is delicious and moist cornbread that can make any cornbread hater change their mind. The second recipe is a newfound comfort food… cheesy creamy polenta. A great dish to serve with baked fish and sauteed leafy greens. Finally, last but not least olive oil popcorn. One of my favorite snacks of all time.
The number one thing I despise about cornbread is that most are so dry and crumbly that it just becomes inedible to me. There's no point in dry cornbread. Cornbread is always the best when moist and luckily I got yo' back! Not only is this cornbread super moist but also the flavor is absolutely incredible. Corny, just the right amount of sweetness which is just a little bit of sweetness, and a touch of vanilla really makes the best cornbread.
125 grams of all purpose flour
120 grams of yellow cornmeal
135 grams of white sugar
6 grams of salt
15 grams of baking powder
235 grams of whole milk
25 grams of vegetable oil
4 tablespoons of butter, melted
2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit. Line and grease a 10 inch cake pan. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine 125 grams of all purpose flour, 120 grams of yellow cornmeal, 135 grams of white sugar, 6 grams of salt, 15 grams of baking powder, 1 egg, 235 grams of whole milk, 25 grams of vegetable oil, 4 tablespoons of melted butter, and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract. Whisk until you have a nice homogenized batter.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 30 minutes or until the crust has hardened a bit and the top has a slight bounce.
Cheesy Oven Baked Polenta
My love for polenta was actually founded 2 years ago. My cousin made me some in an instant pot and I was sold. This polenta is creamy, corny, cheesy, comforting and done in 45 minutes without any effort. Basically, you just put all the ingredients into an oven safe baking dish and bake it. No effort involved and I love it. Normally with polenta there is a lot of stirring and standing when making polenta. I'm all for putting love into your food but when you can have the same result without any of the effort why not do that instead.
2 cups of water
½ cup of polenta
1 tablespoons of butter
1 teaspoon of salt
2 slices of American cheese or 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit.
Next, in an oven safe dish, add 2 cups of water, ½ cup of polenta, 1 tablespoon of butter, and 1 teaspoon of salt
Bake for 40 - 45 minutes or until the polenta is no longer crunchy. Give it a good stir to combine everything together. If you like the consistency to be more creamy add a little bit more water.
Add in the 2 slices of american cheese or 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast, stir to combine, and serve with some delicious sides. I served mine with sauteed spinach and baked fish!
Olive Oil Popcorn
Even though movies are closed we still have tons of streaming services to watch all our movies. But one of the experiences that I miss from going to the theater is getting popcorn. So, why not make some at home! Not only is it healthier, there are no bad fats, no microwave is needed to cook your popcorn, and you can make whatever flavor you want! I love olive oil popcorn or cheesy popcorn so I combined both those flavors by using some nutritional yeast and a drizzle of olive oil. Don't be afraid to make your own seasoning mix using the powdered spices in your pantry.
2 tablespoons of neutral oil
½ teaspoon of salt, plus a little more for sprinkling
⅓ cup of popcorn kernels
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of nutritional yeast
In a large pot, add in 2 tablespoons of neutral oil, ½ teaspoon of salt, and ⅓ cup of popcorn kernels. Turn your stove to medium heat.
Once you start to hear the oil sizzling, beginning shaking your pot so that no part of the popcorn kernels burn.
Slowly but surely the popcorn kernels will start to pop. Make sure you are shaking the pot continuously so that the uncooked popcorn kernels cook evenly and the cooked popcorn doesn't burn at the bottom of the pan.
Once the popping noises slow down or stop, shut the stove off. Take the lid off and drizzle in 1 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of nutritional yeast. Give it a taste and if you need a little bit more seasoning adjust to your taste. Toss to combine and eat while hot!