Yesterday C inexplicably left for a night of snow camping with his man friends, and I was left with a house to myself and free time. So while I pondered what might possess an otherwise reasonable person to dig a hole in the snow and sleep in it when they could be soundly slumbering underneath a mound of fresh warm sheets, I did what any lady craving creature comfort would do: I spent the day with my best friend buying matching sweatpants (my first pair!). And petting rabbits. And eating ice cream. I knew that when he came home wet and exhausted this afternoon he’d probably want something homey and substantial to rejuvenate him, which obviously called for the crock pot…
…and mom’s cast iron skillet cornbread recipe, which is TOTALLY AWESOME. Basically, after throwing on the sweatpants that may never leave my body again, I sauteed up some Italian sausage and onions and added them to a crock pot with kidney, black, and pinto beans, and diced tomatoes. I like to use stock for the base, but since I didn’t have any I just added a bit of water. The spices are improvised as well but pretty standard, I’m sure: cumin, oregano, pepper, chili flakes, ancho chili pepper, garlic salt, and a couple bay leaves.
After 8 hours, this chili was golden. But it needed cornbread! Here’s the recipe!
1 1/2 C flour
1/2 C sugar
2/3 C cornmeal (I used medium ground, but I recommend fine ground)
1 T baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 C milk
1/3 C veg oil
3 T melted butter
Just preheat the oven to 350, and while its heating up throw an oiled cast iron skillet in there to get nice and hot- this is absolutely necessary to get that awesome brown crust that makes the cornbread weep-worthy. Mix the dry ingredients and wet ones separately, then combine in the hot skillet. Bake for 30 minutes and rotate it once or twice for good measure. So now I am finally sated of that chili craving that was stewing all day (stewing! GET IT!? PUNS!!!!) and C is busily fighting off his desire to fall asleep at 7 pm. I don’t blame him though… I’m feeling a bit food coma-y myself and I didn’t spend the night underneath a foot of snow with wet socks on. Because I am a sane human being, and instead spent the night in those god forsaken sweatpants with three blankets (after a premium night out of concerts/alley whiskey/general debauchery with friends, of course).