This is the time of year that for the last eight years (!) I have tested cornbread recipe after cornbread recipe with the hopes of making it to the final cook-off at the National Cornbread Festival in South Pittsburg, Tennessee.
You can read my story here. I finally got to wear that extremely heavy, but oh so pretty cornbread crown. *Cheesy grin*
(I like to use it now when we are under Tornado warnings and crouched in our hallway. Very, very handy.)
And I was feeling a little lost this year not entering, so when Martha White invited me to participate in their virtual cornbread potluck, I didn't bat an eye.
I *cannot* say enough good things about the Cornbread Festival, Martha White, Lodge Cast iron, Brown Stove Works, and all of the other sponsors, volunteers, and people who put this fun festival on each year.
You should enter. You really should. You can find out all about it here.
(I would soooo love to go back this year and just hang out. Seriously thinking about it. We'll see.)
My recipe for the potluck today is Bacon Stuffed Cheeseburger Cornbread, and I have to tell you my family really loved it. Even my four year old grandson gave it two thumbs up because kids + cheeseburgers= match made in heaven. It's super simple and uses common pantry ingredients. Recipe and notes below.
BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE!
Nine other talented bloggers are also posting their fabulous cornbread recipes today for our potluck, so be sure to click on the links and check them out! Here they are:
Celeste Ward at Sugar and Spice by Celeste. Celeste made Buffalo Chicken Cornbread with Blue Cheese Salad.
--I used a 10 1/2 inch Lodge Cast Iron Skillet. This is what I would call the "regular size" one. Now, listen and listen good: my skillet was full to the very top. But it did NOT run over in the oven. And I have made tons of "stuffed" cornbread recipes before and I have never had one run over. But it's a little scary just the same, so I put it on a baking sheet. If your oven is not level, there is a chance is could spill over I guess, so be on the safe side and put a baking sheet under it. Or, yes, you could probably use a slightly larger skillet.
--The first layer of cornbread does not need to brown. It just needs to be set. Mine took exactly 8 minutes in the oven.
--I leave about a 1/2 inch perimeter around the edge so that when I am pouring the final cornbread batter on top, it will form a crust on the sides and kind of seal it all in.
--I take a spatula and just press the filling down slightly before I pour the final cornbread batter over it.
--I start pouring the cornbread batter in the center so it will cover the pickles well, then run down the sides. Don't worry, the pickles will show through a bit. It's not that big of a deal, promise.
--Fry your own bacon, or buy it already cooked. Whatever you want.
--You could certainly swap cheese types from American to cheddar or Colby jack or pepper jack or Swiss…whatever you want.
--I let mine cool for 30 minutes and it was still warm enough to eat "hot." I strongly suggest letting it cool for a while so it will slice better.
Bacon-Cheeseburger Stuffed Cornbread
1-1/4 pounds ground chuck
1/2 cup chopped onion
Salt and pepper taste
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 packages (6.5 ounces each) Martha White Buttermilk Cornbread Mix
1 1/3 cups plus 1/4 cup whole milk, divided
2 tablespoons prepared mustard
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) condensed cheddar cheese soup
1/2 cup ketchup
8 slices American cheese
8 slices pre-cooked bacon, chopped
20-25 (approx.) dill pickle slices
1-2 teaspoons sesame seeds
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a 10-1/2 inch cast iron skillet, cook and crumble ground chuck until almost brown. Add onions and cook until meat is done, adding salt and pepper to taste. Remove meat from skillet with a slotted spoon to a bowl. Drain grease from skillet, then wipe clean. Heat 3 tablespoons vegetable oil in skillet over high heat.
- Meanwhile, mix cornbread mixes with 1-1/3 cup milk, 2 eggs, and 2 tablespoons mustard until blended. Pour 1-1/2 cups of cornbread batter into hot skillet, making sure bottom is evenly covered with batter. Set aside remaining cornbread batter. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until set (does not have to be brown on top). Remove from oven and set aside.
- Stir cheddar cheese soup into meat mixture. When cornbread is done, spread beef mixture on top leaving a 1/2 inch space around perimeter. Drizzle ketchup on top of meat. Top with cheese slices. Sprinkle with chopped bacon, then lay pickle slices over top. Stir remaining 1/4 cup milk into remaining cornbread batter, then pour evenly over top starting in the middle. Sprinkle top evenly with sesame seeds. Return to oven for about 25-30 minutes or until cornbread is golden brown. Let cool 20 minutes, then cut into six wedges. 6 servings.