Cranberry Sage Cornbread

Hello, everyone! I've missed you. This post has been on my to-do list for too long. A new job and business classes have been keeping me busy.

I started bussing at a restaurant called The Dogwood and was able to work my way into the kitchen. For the past couple of weeks I've been training to run "the pantry," that is, the soup-salad-sandwich-dessert side of the kitchen. The Dogwood's mission is to source sustainable, seasonal food, and to offer a chance to individuals who are transitioning from addiction, incarceration, homelessness, and/or underemployment, which is similar to how I plan to run my future bakery cafe.

My business class through Women Entrepreneurs of Baltimore is helping me to research the market, determine feasibility, and learn how to be a business owner. It will also help me to write a business plan and figure out concrete steps to start selling granola at farmers markets and cafes (which will be my first step on the way to opening a bakery cafe). I am very excited for this perfect opportunity.

I made this cornbread recipe a month ago and have had the photos sitting in my camera to share with you. It started by baking out of The Bread Baker's Apprentice, by Peter Reinhart, and noticing a recipe for cornbread. Then, as summer gradually left and I fretted over how to best use up my herbs before they died, I eagerly paired a generous amount of earthy sage with tart cranberries and added them to the cornbread batter. With bated breath, I pulled the fragrant creation out of the oven and felt triumphant as I admired the golden crust and bright cranberries.

If you make this for Thanksgiving or Christmas, you won't be disappointed. I just get so excited about good food, and this cornbread is no exception. The recipe calls for bacon fat to grease the pan. If you don't have any, or want to make this vegetarian, use butter. However, if you have bacon fat, it makes the crust incredibly tasty and golden.

Cranberry Sage Cornbread
Adapted from The Bread Baker's Apprentice
Serves 10-12

1 cup coarse cornmeal
2 cups buttermilk (or 2 tablespoons cider vinegar with milk added to equal 2 cups)
Mix together and let sit while you prepare other ingredients.

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup raw sugar
1/4 firmly packed brown sugar
Mix together in separate bowl. Set aside.

3 eggs
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Whisk eggs in separate bowl. Dissolve the honey in the melted butter, stir into eggs. Add this to the soaked cornmeal mixture. Add the wet mixture to the flour mixture, stir until batter is blended.

1 cup fresh cranberries (can be frozen)
1/4 cup fresh sage, rolled and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons bacon fat
Stir cranberries and sage into batter. Grease a 10-inch round cake pan (or a 12-inch square pan) with bacon fat. Pour batter into pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.  

Printable Recipe

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Sweet Potatoes

Rustic Lemon Cornmeal Cake