Friday, September 19, 2008

What's for Dinner, Jalapeno Cornbread Casserole

Here is another unique recipe that you can do with a pound of ground beef. This one takes a bit more effort and time than the Sloppy Joe Pie, but it is well worth the rewards in my book. This is one of my favorite recipes that my Dad and step-Mom, Kerry, make. It may not look like much, but this stuff is gooood!

Here's Dad and Kerry when Reagan was just two months old, aren't they cute together?

Somewhere in between running marathons, triathalons, kayaking, and biking they cook. I'm not sure where. I'm tired just typing about their activities.

Now to do this recipe right, you're going to need a good old heavy cast 12" cast iron skillet. I suppose you could use something else, but it just won't be quite the same. You could always run to the store and get a cast iron skillet, it's something every kitchen should have and it's pretty inexpensive. But you'll need to clean it and season it before you use it. There is just nothing like an old, perfectly seasoned skillet for cooking fried potatoes and onions, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken, or Bill and my favorite-duck. If your unsure about how to season, clean, or store your cast iron, click here for tips.

Now, I also have to fess up to something. I changed the original recipe (who's surprised?). Dad approved of all of my changes until I mentioned the Jiffy cornbread mix. Yeah, he's a bit of a cornbread snob. He wasn't impressed with that change. So I'll tell you how I shortcut things (and perhaps shortcut flavor in the process but I won't admit it) but at the end I'll post his recipe in its original form so you can decide which one to use (Use mine or I'll never talk to you again. Ok, I'm just kidding. sort of).

This uses peppers but the overall taste is medium to mild in hotness to me. So feel free to add more or less peppers to your taste.

Prep time: 30-40 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes

2 boxes Jiffy Corn muffin mix
2/3 cup milk
2 eggs
1 (160z) can cream-style corn
1 pound ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
1 pound cheddar cheese, grated
5 canned jalapenos, seeded, cored, and diced
1 packet taco seasoning mix
4 canned chipotle peppers, diced
cornmeal for dusting greased pan

* Preheat oven to 350
* Grease 12" cast iron skillet, dust with cornmeal. Set aside.
* Combine cornbread mix, eggs, and milk according to package directions, fold in can of creamed corn, and jalapenos. Set aside.
* Brown meat drain, add taco seasoning according to directions.
* Saute onion. Combine onion, taco beef, and chipotle peppers and set aside.
* Pour half of the cornbread batter into your skillet.
* Spread half grated cheese evenly over batter.
* Spread meat mixture evenly over batter.
* Spread remaining cheese over meat mixture.
* Top with remaining batter.
* Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.

Dad's original recipe:
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup milk
2 eggs
¾ teaspoon soda
½ cup corn oil (original recipe calls for bacon drippings)
1 (1-pound) can cream-style corn
1 pound ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
1 pound cheddar cheese, grated (original recipe call for round cheese?)
5 canned jalapenos chopped

Combine cornmeal, milk, beaten eggs, soda, oil and corn. Mix well and set aside
Brown meat until crumbly. Drain well on paper towels. Pour half of the cornbread
Batter into a well-greased cast iron skillet that has been dusted with cornmeal. Sprinkle grated cheese evenly over batter. Sprinkle meat evenly over the cheese, then sprinkle the chopped onions ( I sauté the onions in the same pan after browning the beef) and jalapenos over the meat. Top with remaining batter. Bake at 350 for 50 minutes.

Original recipe comes from the book "Texas on the Half Shell"


Heather said...

This looks like a really good Fall recipe. YUM...

Michelle said...

I'm so with you on not ever being able to maintain a recipe as is :) I always have to tweak just a little something... and probably not always for the better, but that's ok.

Christine said...

OH YUM! I'm going to have to try this recipe. I L-O-V-E cornbread. :D

Jen said...

I am not a fan of spicy things but it does look good all the same. I may have to tweak it some more.
Cute picture.

MomMega said...

Yum! This looks perfect for a chilly Fall night!! (Of course being in SoCal, I won't get one of those until November).

Kelly Deneen said...

Yummmmm! I will have to bookmark this one!