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Mrs. Harris's Crackling Corn Bread

  • SERVINGS: 6 to 8
  • MAKE-AHEAD

White Springs residents Mary Harris and her husband, Ivey, keep pigs, so cracklings (crisp fried pork fat or skin) aren't hard to come by. But good store-bought bacon works almost as well. This is an adaptation of Mrs. Harris's traditional corn bread recipe, which uses self-rising flour and cornmeal.

  1. 1 pound thickly sliced country-style bacon or pork rind, cut into 1/3 -inch pieces
  2. 1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
  3. 1 cup all-purpose flour
  4. 2 tablespoons sugar
  5. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  6. 1/2 cteaspoon salt
  7. 1 1/4 cups milk
  8. 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  9. 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. In a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat until crisp, about 7 minutes. Drain on paper towels; reserve 2 tablespoons of the drippings.
  2. Wipe out the skillet and set it over low heat. Add the drippings and swirl to coat. In a medium bowl, combine the cornmeal with the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a glass measuring cup, combine the milk and eggs and add to the cornmeal mixture along with the butter; stir just until the cornmeal is moistened. Fold in the bacon and pour the batter into the warm skillet. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm.
Make Ahead The corn bread can be refrigerated, well wrapped, for 2 days. Rewarm, wrapped in foil, in a 350° oven.
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