Chef Jimmy Kennedy, River Run Restaurant, Plainfield, Vermont
3 cups yellow cornmeal
3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cups sugar, plus more for sprinkling (optional)
2 1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons baking powder
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
3 cups milk
Set oven to 450 degrees F.
In a very large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar (if using), salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
Pour the oil into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and place it in the preheated oven until it bubbles, 5-to-10 minutes.
While the oil is heating, mix together the eggs and milk in a small bowl, beating well with a fork.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix, then stir in the very hot oil, a bit at a time. It will not incorporate into the batter perfectly, but that’s okay. The idea here is to give the batter a jump-start on cooking.
Pour the batter into the hot skillet (you don’t need to grease it; the residual oil will do the job). Sprinkle a bit of sugar on top for taste and looks.
Bake until brown or until your tester comes out clean, about 25 minutes.
Allow the corn bread to sit in the pan for an hour so, so it can be easily removed.
Serve as soon as possible.
Makes one 10-inch round loaf.