Cornbread has been my lifelong staple when it comes to eating. I love it – so when I read the current issue of “Mississippi Farm Country” the other day, I enjoyed the article by Sam Scott entitled “Maize Magic.”
Mr. Scott is a typical southerner who loves cornbread. He says there are more than 200 recipes for cornbread, but I know my favorite is just corn meal mix with a little self-rising flour (amount depending on how much meal you use), egg, and milk (either buttermilk or sweet, doesn’t matter to me).
I like Mexican cornbread with all the added ingredients, and my friend makes Kentucky cornbread which is very good, but with a pot of vegetables, my favorite is just plain cornbread the way my mother made it.
She always made cornbread in a big black iron skillet. Oh she had the cornbread stick pan and the round muffin pan, but the “pone” in the skillet was much better – you can just get a better bite of bread when you cut it from a cake-size pone.
My grandchildren love cornbread, too. If they walk in the kitchen, open the oven, and see cornbread left from dinner (noon meal), they immediately get excited. They eat it like it’s some sweet delicacy – and I like that. I never pushed it – I just cooked the bread and the taste came naturally for them.
Everybody has a favorite thickness. My daddy liked it thin with a crisp bottom and so do my husband and I. My mother liked it thicker and so do my kids. …So I vary mine when I cook according to who is going to be eating with us.
The writer of the magazine article says life and home wouldn’t be the same without cornbread, but he’s afraid it will lose its value in the world of “instant gratification” where young folks want things quickly microwaved rather than taking time to cook the original way.
Mr. Scott also reminds us that if the Native Americans had not taught early settlers in America how to grown corn, the newcomers would probably have perished. That’s quite a thought! As a side note, also, I saw a cartoon-type picture the other day which showed the settlers being offered food by the Native Americans – even though they couldn’t speak the Native language. Does that tell us something about how the native people treated immigrants and give us a hint as to how we should treat them???
Anyway, without the people we commonly call Indians, we probably wouldn’t be here and even if we were, we might not have corn and cornbread! And if we didn’t have cornbread, we couldn’t make cornbread dressing for Thanksgiving. And what would our Thanksgiving table be like in the South if there was no cornbread dressing?
As we give thanks for God’s abundant blessings, let’s thank Him for the simple things in life, like vegetables and cornbread, children playing in the yard, and open fields and clear streams of water. Life is good in America and we should never cease to give thanks as we live it in freedom. He is the Source of everything we have – let’s praise Him!