In my attempt to be a very Southern woman, I decided to make some kick-ass cornbread for Q and myself the other week. Yes it was the middle of summer and I made cornbread and chili, but so what? I LOVE the ease of making cornbread- no big kitchen tools needed, simple ingredients, and a quick took time. The only ingredient you may not have on hand is buttermilk, but there are some easy fixes if you don’t. This cornbread is extra special because of the topping: honey butter and scallions (also super easy to put together). I made this whole recipe, we had about 1/4 of it for dinner and I froze the rest for the fall (or when I’m gone and Q needs some food!). Enjoy!
Skillet Cornbread with Honey Butter & Scallions
- 1 1/4 cups cornmeal
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, divided
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Whisk cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
3. Whisk egg, buttermilk, and 4 tbsp melted butter in a small bowl. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients, stirring until just combined.
4. Heat a 10″ cast-iron skillet on high heat with 1 tbsp melted butter. Pour batter into pan. Transfer to oven and bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 25–30 minutes.
5. Just before the cornbread is done baking, make the topping: Combine honey and 1 tbsp melted butter. (If the honey is too thick, microwave it for 10 seconds to loosen it up.)
6. Remove cornbread from the oven and immediately brush on topping, then sprinkle with scallions. Serve warm.
This is one of my favorite weeknight meals ever. I love the easy prep and the simple method of cooking the chicken (baked in wine and Greek seasoning). I used rice I had made the night before and reheated, but it’s also super simple to make some rice while your chicken bakes. I made this into a big salad by adding a few handfuls of mixed greens. Perfection.
Greek Chicken with Tomato-and-Rice Salad
Makes 4 Servings
- Zest from one lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
- Juice from one lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Greek seasoning (make your own or improvise with these dried spices: oregano, basil, garlic powder, parsley)
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3 garlic cloves, minced and divided
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup dried rice (white, brown or mixed)
- 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
- 3 small baby cucumbers, sliced
- 3 scallions, sliced
- 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/4 cup sliced fresh mint
- 2 ounces crumbled feta cheese (about 1/2 cup)
- 4 cups mixed greens
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Combine lemon zest, thyme, Green seasoning, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and 2 garlic cloves in a bowl. Rub on chicken. Pour wine into an 11×7 baking dish and top with chicken. Cook until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F, about 28-30 minutes. Allow chicken to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
- Meanwhile, prepare rice according to package directions. Transfer rice to a bowl and stir in tomatoes, cucumbers, scallions, parsley, mint, feta, lemon juice, remaining 3 tablespoons oil, and remaining garlic clove.
- Serve rice salad on top of mixed greens, topped with chicken.
I don’t know what has gotten into me, but I have been on a Southern-baking roll over here. Maybe it is all the Southern Living I have been reading on my flights or perhaps just being around the Southern drawl again, but this past week I went to work in the kitchen!
My first very Southern baking attempt was trying true buttermilk biscuits. I am a big fan of Joy the Baker’s Feta and Chive Sour Cream Biscuits, but wanted to be super traditional with this recipe, buttermilk and all! The technique that was most interesting to me here was grating the frozen butter. When making biscuits, you always want your butter and dough to be VERY cold. My usual technique is to cut the frozen butter into small pieces, but this recipe had me grating it, which took a good amount of time and got a little messy. Overall, these biscuits were super buttery and delicious and I would definitely try them again (maybe with just small pieces of butter though!).
Makes 12 to 14 biscuits
- 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), frozen
- 2 1/2 cups self-rising flour (King Arthur Flour was great for this)
- 1 cup chilled buttermilk
- Parchment paper
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Grate frozen butter using large holes of a box grater. Toss together grated butter and flour in a medium bowl. Chill 10 minutes.
- Make a well in the center of mixture. Add buttermilk and stir 15 times with your hand or a spatula. Dough will be sticky.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Lightly sprinkle flour our top of dough. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll dough into a 3/4-inch-thick rectangle (about 9×5 inches). Fold dough in half so short ends meet. Repeat rolling and folding process 4 times.
- Roll dough to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut with a 2 1/2 inch floured round cutter, reshaping scraps and flouring as needed.
- Place dough rounds on a parchment paper-lined jelly-roll pan. Bake at 475 for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Brush with melted butter.
Adapted from Southern Living
This is one of my all-time favorite summer meals (right behind this Caprese Pasta). I love sitting on the deck, eating this while enjoying a crisp glass of white wine. I usually associate pasta with fall, but this lighter take on it is prefect for an easy deck dinner. All it takes is twenty minutes and voila, dinner is served!
Linguini with Shrimp Scampi
- Vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt plus 1 1/2 teaspoons
- 3/4 pound linguine
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 1/2 tablespoons good olive oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic (about 4 cloves)
- 1 pound large shrimp (about 16 shrimp), peeled and deveined
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
- Zest from 1/2 lemon, grated
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
- 1/4 lemon, thinly sliced in half-rounds
- 1/8 teaspoon (a pinch) hot red pepper flakes
- Bring a large pot of water to boiling, add enough salt so water tastes like the ocean (about 1 tablespoon) add the linguine, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, or according to the directions on the package.
- Meanwhile, in another large (12-inch), heavy-bottomed pan, melt the butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Be careful, the garlic burns easily! Add the shrimp, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and the pepper and saute until the shrimp have just turned pink, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat, add the parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, lemon slices, and red pepper flakes. Toss to combine.
- When the pasta is done, drain the cooked linguine and then put it back in the pot. Immediately add the shrimp and sauce, toss well, and serve.
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