Sprouted Cornbread

by Ann Marie Michaels on September 2, 2011

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I grew up in Texas, and I love Tex Mex more than any other food. Cornbread is a staple comfort food in Texas.

This cornbread is divine. It’s got grass-fed cream and cheese and corn kernels added to it. The cream and cheese add fat-soluble vitamins A, D & K2, and the cheese gives it protein.

Not only is this cornbread much more nutrient-dense, the taste is amazing. It takes cornbread to a whole new level. It goes really well with chili, carnitas, or pot roast. And yes, it is gluten-free!

I’ve made this cornbread even more nutritious by using sprouted cornmeal. If you can’t get sprouted cornmeal, you can soak the corn in lime water overnight. If you’re using sprouted corn, it is not necessary to soak the cornmeal in the lime water, but if you want to do both, you can.

Why Soaked or Sprouted Cornbread?

Soaking and sprouting grains is a traditional practice. Read my blog post about why it’s critical to sprout and/or soak cornmeal.

In the early 1900s, for example, in the American South, people were using corn more frequently in their cooking for corn breads, corn grits, and the like. However, unlike our neighbors south of the border who were soaking grains, Americans were not soaking it. As a result, we saw an epidemic of Pellagra — 100,000 afflicted in 1916. Source

Recipe Notes

I modified this recipes from the book, The New Texas Cuisine (one of my favorite cookbooks), by Texan Chef, Stephan Pyles.

Where to Buy Sprouted Corn Flour

You can find organic sprouted corn flour online from To Your Health Sprouted Flour — click here to find them on my resources page.

I buy the 5-pound bag and store it in the freezer. (Since this is a whole grain, it will go rancid in the cupboard. Another reason to BUY sprouted corn flour instead of soaking cornmeal that’s been sitting for a long time at the store.)

Be sure to always buy ORGANIC cornmeal, since non-organic corn is typically genetically modified.

Sprouted cornmeal is great for making cornbread, polenta (recipe coming soon on the blog,) tortillas, and tamales.

Sprouted Cornbread

Ingredients

If using unsprouted cornmeal:
Pickling lime — I use Mrs. Wages brand which I bought online
Filtered water
Cornbread:
Sprouted cornmeal, organic, or regular organic cornmeal (1 cup) — where to buy sprouted cornmeal
Sea salt (1/2 tsp) — where to buy sea salt
Baking Soda (1/2 tsp)
Eggs, large, pastured (2)
Buttermilk or yogurt (2/3 cup) — where to buy yogurt starters
Lard, beef tallow, grass-fed butter, ghee, or expeller-pressed coconut oil (1/3 cup) — where to buy grass-fed butter;where to buy ghee; where to buy coconut oil
Corn, frozen or fresh, organic if possible (3/4 cup)
Cream, ideally raw, from grass-fed cows (1/2 cup)
Cheese, cheddar, grass-fed (1 cup) — where to buy cheese
Optional: 2 jalapeño chiles

Equipment

Large cast iron skillet
Food processor or box grater

Directions

If using unsprouted cornmeal:
1. To make lime water: Add 1 tablespoon Mrs. Wages pickling lime to one quart of filtered water. Stir well.
2. Add one cup of cornmeal to a large glass bowl or enamelware Dutch oven (do not use stainless steel or other metal). Thoroughly mix in 3/4 cup of the premade lime water.
3. Cover and let sit in a warm place for 12-24 hours.
Making the cornbread:
4. When you are ready to bake the cornbread, rinse and drain the cornmeal (or get out your sprouted cornmeal).
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
6. If using optional jalapeno chiles, put on some gloves (rubber gloves will work), cut off the tops of the chiles and discard.
7. Slice the jalapenos in half. Remove the seeds and discard. Finely mince the jalapenos. Set aside.
8. In a small saucepan, melt the lard, tallow, butter or coconut oil and set aside to cool.
9. Grate the cheese using your food processor or box grater. Set aside.
10. Rinse the soaked cornmeal under filtered water.
11. Stir in sea salt and baking soda to the bowl with the cornmeal. Set aside.
12. In another bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the buttermilk or yogurt and melted/cooled lard, tallow or coconut oil and mix well. Combine with cornmeal.
13. Fold in the corn, cream, grated cheese, and if using, chiles.
14. Set a large cast-iron skillet in the oven for about 5 minutes and let it heat through.
15. Remove from oven and pour in the cornmeal mixture.
16. Return to oven and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until it’s golden brown all over the top, looks somewhat “sponge-like” and is starting to pull away from edges of pan.
17. When done, remove from oven and let cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing. Serve with plenty of grass-fed butter or ghee.

Photo Credit: debra solomon on Flickr
Disclosure: cmp.ly/4 and cmp.ly/5

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Julie D. September 2, 2011 at 3:59 PM

looks good; and gluten free too.

Reply

Naomi Snider September 2, 2011 at 7:11 PM

Okay, it’s never occurred to me to sprout corn. I seem to be unable to find any instructions for making my own sprouted corn meal. Do you have anything?

Reply

cheeseslave September 2, 2011 at 7:34 PM

No, I don’t know about sprouting corn. I buy it sprouted. But you can also soak the whole corn or cornmeal in lime water.

Reply

Mari September 2, 2011 at 7:45 PM

Would soaking the cornmeal overnight or longer in the buttermilk make a similar nutritional improvement? I’ve made your wonderful corn tortillas with corn soaked with Mrs. Wages, but it seems like it might quite difficult to rinse cornmeal. Freshly ground cornmeal makes a great flavor, but I wonder if I could just soak the whole corn (same as for tortillas), rinse well, process it into a slurry and add the rest of the ingredients.

Reply

Laura September 2, 2011 at 8:19 PM

I’ve been wondering about rinsing the cornmeal too. How well do you need to rinse it? Isn’t the pickling lime something you really don’t want to ingest?

Reply

Ruth @ Ruth's Real Food September 3, 2011 at 2:02 AM

Why sprouted and not nixtamalized? Any idea how these two processed compare?

Looks delicious, by the way.

Reply

Martha September 3, 2011 at 7:07 AM

I use whole corn kernels. I pulse them a few times to break them up a bit in my blender then add the lime water and let them soak. I rinse them well in a small colander and then full grind them and soak them again in clabbered milk before adding the last of the ingredients and making the cornbread.

Reply

Martha September 3, 2011 at 7:09 AM

I meant “fully” grind, of course. Also, to clarify, I’m using field corn not fresh or frozen corn kernels.

Your recipe looks awesome, Cheeseslave.

Reply

EileenH September 3, 2011 at 9:55 AM

Thank you for posting the link to buying sprouted corn meal. This area is probably the only big concern I have about NT. The entire idea of soaking makes 100% sense to me, but when I first tried this, I was unable to rinse the lime water out of the corn meal, so I threw it out. I’ve never been able to get clarification, but that lime water is nasty stuff and it just doesn’t make sense to me to soak the meal and then consume it. I’ve followed the entire process of soaking, grinding, etc., but often I just don’t have time for it. I’m going to buy some of the sprouted meal but if anyone here can help me understand HOW to rinse soaked meal, I’d really appreciate it.

Reply

Meagan September 3, 2011 at 1:08 PM

I have a great gluten-free grass-fed dairy everything recipe too. I did not use soaked cornmeal or sprouted cornmeal, so I may try soaking the corn in lime before I make it next. My recipe uses a variety of different cornmeals, so it may not work, but my recipe would be a good one for those who don’t have time to soak or sprout and are using organic cornmeal. Thanks for the directions on soaking the cornmeal!!

http://mutritiousnuffins.blogspot.com/2009/08/best-cornbread.html

Reply

Janet September 9, 2011 at 7:50 AM

Does Mrs. Wages have any MSG in their products?
I used their salsa mix this summer in a few quarts of
tomatoes and it was delicious. Upon their return e-mail
they had said there is NO msg. I hope they told me the truth.

Have a good day everyone.

Reply

tina October 10, 2011 at 6:56 AM

I’d like to get clarification on sprouted corn vs. soaking in lime water. I’d much rather buy sprouted corn/flour from To Your Health Sprouted Flour. I get all of my sprouted flour from this company.

Reply

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