By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Corn bread controversy II
Old Hinesville
cornbread article 004
Updated version of Shippey’s beloved cookbook. - photo by Photo by Judy Shippey
Due to technical difficulties between word processors, the entire Cornbread article did not get printed week before last.  However, I have recently discovered that that was a good thing.  There has been a recent development which added more to the story.
While shopping in Savannah recently, I was browsing through a large book store.  Suddenly my attention was caught by a familiar name; “Southern Cooking” by Mrs. S.R. Dull.
It was staring me in the face — a reprinted edition of the book!  Excitedly I called my shopping buddy’s attention to it and we discovered that the one I had seen was a later edition than the one I have loved so long.  Further investigation revealed that there was also a reprinted edition of my old favorite, done up with a colorful jacket.
I quickly turned to page 161 to find out if the cornbread recipe was there, and it was.  I was enchanted.  When I told another friend who was shopping with us about what we had discovered, this friend decided to buy me the new book as a gift.  I was, and am, so thrilled.  
The new book is a real treasure; it has a foreword by a Savannian Damon Lee Fowler, in which he provided details of Mrs. Dull’s life that I had not known before.  For example, in 1910 she was hired by the Atlanta Gas Light Company to demonstrate the safety and efficiency of their new gas-fired ranges.
“Her lectures and demonstrations were soon packing houses, and according to those who heard her speak, her word, when it came to cooking, was considered gospel.”
You can readily understand why the new book is such a treasured addition to my cookbook shelves.  However, I don’t yet actually cook from the new book; I don’t want to mess it up. I still use the old battered one for actual cooking. Every home should have a copy of this reprinted edition.
As far as the other cornbread recipe which didn’t get printed, here it is: It is a tad more modern than my old favorite and it came from Emeril Lagasse on the Food TV network.  I have used it many times to make the cornbread to use for the dressing at Thanksgiving.  It is called:

Alden’s grandmother’s corn bread
1/4 cup bacon grease, vegetable oil or shortening
2 cups cornmeal (I use Arnette’s plain corn meal, milled in Tifton)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
5 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat the oven to 450.  Place the bacon grease in a black cast iron skillet and distribute over the bottom and sides with a paper towel.  Place the skillet in the oven to heat.
Combine the corn meal, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl.  In a small bowl combine the buttermilk, egg and melted butter. Add to dry ingredients and stir just to combine.  Remove the hot skillet from the oven and quickly pour in the batter. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until firm and golden brown on top.  Let sit for five minutes (if you can wait that long), then turn out onto a cutting board.  Cut into wedges and serve hot with butter.
I hope that you will try one of the cornbread recipes. I will be very interested to know how you like it!  Contact me at the newspaper Web site and let me know.
Sign up for our e-newsletters