Market Fresh Cornbread

MS Cornbread1

Up until now, there are only two cornbread recipes that I’ve ever used. Just two.

The first default choice is my grandmother’s recipe, which is one I’ve shared on the blog before. We use it for the ‘bread’ part of every family dinner that we have, and also use it for the base of our special family dressing that we make every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Keeping it true to our Southern roots, it’s non-sweet, mainly cornmeal based and rather crumbly in texture. There is a very simple explanation for this: it’s friggin marvelous.

MS Cornbread3

The second recipe that I’ve used and actually been pretty satisfied with, is one I found on It’s a ‘Northerner’ recipe that’s rather sweet with a more even ratio of flour to cornmeal. As a result, the crumb is more finer than my grandma’s. It’s pretty tasty I’ll admit, and when I’m trying to aim for a cornbread that caters to my more “Northern” tastebuds, I’ll throw it together on the quick.

And just in case you were wondering…no. I don’t do Jiffy Mix. It’s nothing personal, I don’t even think Jiffy Mix tastes that bad. But…no.

MS Cornbread4

I’m stuck up when it comes to my cornbread guys. The truth is, most of the time it’s a hit-or-miss game. And I can think of very few other things that are  more depressing to me than cornbread that is a big fat ‘miss’.

I really didn’t think I’d ever be saying this, but with my recent Christmas gift of Chef Marcus Samuelsson’s newest cookbook “Marcus Off Duty,” I think I’ve found a third cornbread recipe that I’m actually going to be willing to keep on my super exclusive roster. The almost immediate appeal to me was finding out that this is the recipe for the cornbread that is served at Marcus’ Harlem restaurant Red Rooster- a place that is on my Food Bucket List to attend before I buy the farm.

MS Cornbread5

Word of warning for my Southern friends: this is not exactly what we think of when it comes to ‘cornbread’. In the first place, it’s extremely moist, almost to the point where it melts in your mouth. Secondly, us folks used to Dixie cornbread- and likely some Yankees too- will at best give a double take at the inclusion of ginger, cardamom, chile powder and paprika in a cornbread recipe. At worst, we’ll start a riot.  But just hear me out- I was skeptical too. But it works. It really does. The spices aren’t overpowering at all, and they somehow work REALLY well with the inclusion of the sharp cheddar cheese.

MS Cornbread2

Oh yeah- and did I mention there’s fresh corn baked into the batter? Cause there is. And it was a really good idea. It gives a special ‘chew’ to the bread that is absent in most other recipes that can result in a bland one-note texture. None of that here, I can assure you.

I think my favorite part of cornbread is the crust that forms on the top and sides while baking. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, then you’re doing the ‘cornbread’ thing wrong and you should rethink your entire life. This loaf’s crust baked up perfectly.

MS Cornbread6

All of that being said, I do intend to stick with just these three cornbread recipes for both the near and distant future. Life shouldn’t be TOO complicated. Some things need to be kept simple and stream-lined.  Am I right or am I right?


Market Fresh Cornbread

Recipe Courtesy of Marcus Samuelsson



  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/8 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1/8 tsp. chile powder
  • 1/8 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cu grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels, including the pulp scraped from the cobs (cut from about 1 large or 2 small ears of corn)


1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. and generously butter a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan.

2. Put the butter, ginger, cardamom, chile powder, paprika, and sugar into a small pot over medium heat and cook until the butter is melted and the spices are fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes.

3. Whisk the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, buttermilk and spicy butter together. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until all the dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in the cheddar and corn, then fold in the scallions if using.

4. Scrap the batter into the loaf pan. Set the pan on a baking sheet, slide it into the oven and bake until a skewer stuck in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Turn the loaf upside down onto a rack and let cool for 20 minutes. Then lift off the pan.

43 thoughts on “Market Fresh Cornbread

  1. The recipe really does sound good and I trust a Southern gal’s opinion on good corn bread. As someone who is not Southern by birth I will be forever challenged when it comes to biscuits and cornbread. This recipe really sounds great, the spicing in the loaf is surprising to me but I can see it working. It looks pretty perfect to me.

      1. Hey Jess, WC. Wish you Good Friday and Happy Easter!
        So what all did you prepare on Easter?

  2. I love this post- but I know that you weren’t that skeptical about a Marcus Samuelsson recipe! I really want to go to his Harlem restaurant too- it sounds amazing. This cornbread looks and sounds wonderful- I always love cornbread with fresh corn in it- mmmm. Nice!

  3. I haven’t had corn bread in ages and this looks so delicious even me, the mostly non baker, feel like getting my gear out! An Easter project, love the spices 🙂

  4. Your second cornbread recipe already and it sounds sacrilegious…and…delicious!! 😀 This one I really need to try. Cardamom in cornbread, really? I need to try. What, and ginger? I NEED to try! Btw, Prudy is in for FF62. XOXO

    1. The cardamom is definitely ‘there’ but it works very well in the bread Andrea- I really think you’ll like it 🙂

  5. I’ve always used my grandma’s recipe for southern cornbread and I love it! It’s very similar to the one you shared on your blog 🙂 This recipe really intrigues me though… cardamom AND cheddar cheese?! Sounds wonderfully different! I’m bookmarking this to give it a try sometime in the future!

  6. Hm…interesting ingredients, but cardamom and ginger are two of the ingredients in Chai Tea Latte and the cornbread looks moist and delicious. I am pining this on my board to try. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  7. I tried corn bread a few times and was not happy with the result. This looks soft and delicious! I like the spicy twist too. So, this is bookmarked!

  8. Love how you can actually see the kernels of corn throughout…now I have a serious corn bread craving! Even though I love how this looks, I think the next time I make cornbread I’ll use your grandma’s recipe. 🙂

    1. Aww thanks Bonnie- my grandma’s recipe is the way to go if you’re looking for something more ‘traditional’ for sure 🙂

    1. I don’t really need my cornbread to be very soft or moist- I like it to have a bit more coarse texture typically, but to be honest, this is one of the moistest cornbreads I’ve ever had so if that’s what you’re looking, this is the one to try. Thank you! 🙂

  9. MMMMM, this bread looks SUPER moist, I Love it!!! I have some great dinner recipes that this bread would go perfectly with, I can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing the recipe and for hosting FF! 🙂

  10. Thanks for the recipe. Im from California and visited the Red Rooster in Harlem 3 years ago and Marcus was there that day. They serve the corn bread on a wooden board with several slices as an appetizer. Each slice looks like it was buttered and placed on a griddle. Each side had a crispy edge and oh my…. so good.

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