Cheddar-Jalapeño Spoon Bread


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In case (like I was) you’re under the illusion that Spoon Bread is actual bread, let me shatter that illusion for you. It’s not. It’s more like a soufflé. In fact, there’s no flour in it all and it contains just a pinch of cornmeal. A pinch! Despite knowing these things going into making this dish, I still thought it would actually taste like bread. Really you shouldn’t have the name bread in a dish if it’s not going to taste like bread.

ingredients.

  • 1 1/2 c. milk (or a combination of milk and half-and-half)
  • 1/2 c. cornmeal (I used blue)
  • 2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4 jalapeño peppers, chopped
  • 1 T. margarine
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 eggs

directions.

  1. In a large saucepan combine milk and cornmeal. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium-high heat until mixture is thickened and bubbly. (This will not take very long at all. Two or three minutes, probably.) Remove from heat.
  2. Add cheese, jalapeño, butter, baking powder, sugar and salt; stir until cheese melts. (Mine definitely didn’t melt completely – this didn’t seem to matter.)
  3. Separate eggs. Add yolks, one at a time. Stir after each addition until just combined. (The mixture will be thick.)
  4. In a large mixing bowl beat egg whites on high-speed until stiff peaks form. Fold into cornmeal mixture in thirds until combined. Spoon into an ungreased 2-quart casserole or soufflé dish.
  5. Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 50 to 55 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Serve immediately.

Much like dessert breads, I found I had to bake this longer than recommended. Maybe it’s my oven?! The ‘bread’ was a little jiggly after 45 minutes (which was the low-end of what’s recommended in the original recipe) so I continued to bake. I’m pretty sure I baked this for either 55 or 60 minutes.

Like any egg dish, this bread/soufflé puffs up when you’re baking and then deflates when it cools.

With four whole jalapeño peppers in this dish, it was pretty spicy. Great flavor, but I couldn’t get over the texture. I kept thinking it should feel a bit more substantial. You know. Like actual bread.

Recipe rating:

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