Pop quiz. My main reason for making this Dilled Zucchini Cornbread was:
A) I have zucchini, ZUCCHINI!, coming out of my ears, EARS!, so I needed to find another use for my multiplying summer squashes
B) I had just spent the afternoon creating a lovely, hearty stew and I needed a compelling dunker to accompany the simmering stuff
C) I wanted to bake something in my cast iron skillet because I was in a rustic state-of-mind
If you guessed A or B, you obviously have a high opinion of me and you’re likely reading the wrong blog. But I thank you, anyway.
If you guessed C, you are correct and today’s prize is a thorough, somewhat strange, somewhat boring explanation of the why, what and wherefore.
(You still with me?)
Last week, I was puttering away on the computer, switching between windows of Bejeweled Blitz and Pinterest. I was a little bored. I was a little hungry. I was feeling a little artsy. A little fartsy (though I always blame that on the dogs). I had the urge to bake something in my godforsaken cast iron pan that takes a two-handed effort just to heave out of the cabinet. Random, but such are most of my thoughts, like two squirrels chasing each other and taking a time out to groom themselves.
I considered the pantry, I considered the fridge. I considered some chocolate chips (Translation: I shoved 3 handfuls of chocolate chips into my mouth and tried to chew without anything falling out). Ultimately, I decided on cornbread. Because cornbread is rustic and so is cast iron. They just go together in a big rustic whoop-dee-do.
BUT, since I DID have a few zucchini hanging around, why not throw them in for some extra moisture and greenage amongst the dense, chewy crumb? And, in my personal bible, nothing goes better with zucchini than dill. Thus a star was born.
(Are you really STILL with me?)
I realize how utterly grateful you are for this priceless story. Perhaps your opinion of me has changed. Perhaps you feel bad for me because I don’t have zucchini, ZUCCHINI!, coming out of my ears, EARS! No doubt, you understand why I must drown my sorrows by furtively stuffing unnatural amounts of chocolate into my mouth several times a day.
And since you likely are nothing like me, you likely DO have a surplus of zucchini in your possession. Or you DO have a glorious, steamy soup on the horizon. Which is a perfect reason make this cornbread, wrist-spraining cast iron skillet optional.
Dilled Zucchini Cornbread
(Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated)
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup greek yogurt
2/3 cup milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons dried dill
1 heaping cup zucchini, shredded and gently squeezed to get rid of the excess liquid
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place a 10 inch cast iron or baking pan in the oven.
Melt 2 tablespoon of butter and set it aside, allowing it to cool.
In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, and dill. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, yogurt and milk until combined. Drizzle in the melted butter, whisking continuously.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold until nearly combined. Add the zucchini and stir until blended.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to the preheating pan in the oven and carefully swirl to evenly coat the bottom. Carefully add the batter to the pan, smoothing the top, and bake for 25 minutes, until golden. Serve warm or at room temperature
Yields 8-10 slicesPin It