Monday, January 16, 2006

Cornbread and Buttermilk

I know I'm a country girl, but tonight it has been confirmed. One of my favorite foods is cornbread and buttermilk mixed together in a bowl. It is SOOOO GOOD! I thought it was something that lots of people ate, because my whole family ate it when I was growing up. We had lots of country food though, because my step-dad raised all kinds of vegetables in the garden.

My sister and I had to help in the summer heat, planting seeds, "dusting"* plants, watering plants, picking beans and snapping them, picking and shelling peas, picking corn and shucking it, picking okra and slicing it to be fried, following the tractor and picking up the potatoes that popped up from the plows. It was torturous work in the southern heat. There were occasional breezes that came through the field, and we would each stand with our arms raised to welcome the coolness. Yes, the work was hard, but the food was wonderful.

My mother would can and freeze everything she could. She made homemade pickles, canned vegetable soup, tomatoes, and tomato juice, froze corn and peas, canned green beans. That pressure cooker was constantly whistling during harvest time. On the days she made pickles, the entire house smelled like vinegar - yuck! But the pickles were good, as well as everything else from our garden.

Tonight I decided to make some cornbread, and was getting so excited about it, because I knew I had some whole buttermilk in the fridge. I set the buttermilk out on the counter so it could come to room temperature while the cornbread was cooking in the oven.

I went down the hall to talk to Marvin while he was watching tv and playing on the computer. I laid on the bed and said, "I'm making some cornbread." He said, "Oh no! You're going to have cornbread and buttermilk again aren't you?" I said, "Of course - it's one of my favorite things to eat!" He was completely grossed out.

When the cornbread was ready, he followed me to the kitchen and watched me take it out of the oven. I cut off a big slice and put it on a plate for him, and helped him butter it real good. Steam was rising from the bread, and the butter melted fast - it was delicious! I had some with him, and we both gobbled it up.

Then, I reached for a bowl to get some more cornbread and Marvin just ran out of the room yelling, "Yuck! I know what you're going to do." I ignored him, cut off some cornbread and crumbled it in the bowl. Then I picked up the warm buttermilk and poured it over the cornbread, stirring it up with a spoon. When the buttermilk mixed in with the bread, I added a little more buttermilk to make it the right consistency.

I carried the mixture to the craft room, so I could sit in my rocker and eat it while watching HGTV. Marvin came in the room saying, "Gross! I love you, but I can't stand to watch you eating that." I said, "Then why did you come in here? Go away, so I can eat my delicacy in peace."

I thoroughly enjoyed my cornbread and buttermilk. The cornbread was just right - no sugar added, just natural. If you add sugar to the cornbread, it doesn't taste right with buttermilk. I've had that sugared cornbread before, and it only tastes good by itself. You have to follow the recipe on the mix that doesn't call for sugar. That's the only way to make it right if you intend to add buttermilk after it's cooked.

After my meal, I decided to look on the internet to see how many others out there enjoy cornbread and buttermilk like me. Not that many, apparently. The only references I could find were "soul food" websites. lol

Oh well, I don't care who likes it or who doesn't. I'm gonna keep eating it until the day I die, because I love it!

* for those of you who don't know, "dusting" plants is putting "sevin" dust in an old sock and shaking it over the plants to keep the bugs away. Yes, it's a pesticide.

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

I came to your site to get the baby hat pattern but the cornbread and milk caught my eye. I was born and raised and still live in Louisiana and you are so right about NO sugar in the cornbread. And grits and cornmeal better be yellow. Enjoy your mush!

Sue

cutecapricorn said...

im from north carolina and i love cornbread and buttermilk and im only 19 lol my granny drinks buttermilk pure, i dont i just like it with my cornbread, i thought i was the only one who liked it also, i also like livermush!

Anonymous said...

"Milk and Bread" (again no sugar in the cornbread) was a regular snack,sometimes the meal, when I was growing up in East Tennessee, and was accepted by my husband in much the same way as yours. This is a treat that I look forward to when there is leftover cornbread. Your description of working in the garden and working the vegetables brought back a lot of memories, ours also included hauling buckets of water up from the creek when we planted. I,too, have dusted plants with sevin.

Karen

Anonymous said...

I have been around the sun nearly 57 times now and your comments about the garden and eating cornbread with buttermilk brought back sweet memories of my childhood. We, too, had a large garden that had to be tended nearly daily. I also had the sheer joy of "dusting" with the sevin dust being put in the toe of an old sock or being spread with a hand powered puffer. My mom planted what had to be the longest rows of butter beans and dad spent hours putting up small cut trees and string to hold up pole beans. Thanks for the memories.

Anonymous said...

Wow!!! I thought it was just my family :-) I'm from Detroit, but my Great-grandmother was from Yazoo City, Mississippi and she used to give us 'Milk and Bread' all the time. It's one of my favorites and now my 14 year old daughter enjoys it as well.

Anonymous said...

I'm a California girl...L.A. to be exact and I grew up eating cornbread and buttermilk with my grandmother from Lousiana. I'm pregnant and craving it like crazy right now! Hubby might have to do a late night run to the market...

Anonymous said...

Remember my Mom making alunch of an ice tea glass full of buttermilk with crumbled up cornbread. That and a bowl of soup beans would keep you going all day, which she needed, chasing after my twin brother and I.

Anonymous said...

I am shocked to hear how many others there are that know about cornbread and buttermilk. I grew up on this in my family (from east Tennessee). My wife, from Buffalo, thinks this is a nasty thing to eat, but I love it. My family has another twist on this that I would love to see if anyone else does. We chop up some onion and stick it in the mix. Sounds weird, tastes great.

Anonymous said...

Cornbread and buttermilk is like cocaine to me. (I've never tried cocaine, thank God, but I can imagine what it is like.)
My Mom made white cornbread pancakes (no sugar) when I was a kid and served it up warm with a bowl of cold buttermilk. The two combined to make a luke warm bowl of "heaven on earth". We were dirt poor but this is and always be "comfort food" to me.
I make lots of money now (in fact, I pay more in taxes than my Dad ever earned in a year) and can afford to eat in a lot of upper crust places. I have eaten at places I would have never dreamed of as a kid. I have even eaten at places where the Chef comes out and explains how yummy (not) and sophisticated all the stacked, crappy food is on the plate for an outrageous price.
Yet, I have never found anything that warms me up and satifies me like the stuff my Mom made on a shoestring budget when I was young.

Cornbread and buttermilk rules.

Anonymous said...

My grandpa used to eat this for supper. He was a Kentuckian living in Ohio :)
Lately I've been eating it too--found out how healthy buttermilk (even store-bought "cultured" buttermilk) is for you, along with savory cornbread. Apparently buttermilk has the same "good" bacteria as yogurt!

Shandeh said...

So wonderful to hear from other Cornbread and Buttermilk FANS! We are not alone. *hug*

I made some more this week, and it was SO GOOD!!!

Anonymous said...

Unbeknownst to most Americans, Southern cooking and soul food are pretty much the same. So it's not surprising that you found references to cornbread and buttermilk on soul food website. I'm from South Carolina, and my grandparents ate buttermilk and cornbread all the time. And so did I! In fact, I found your website through a google search for cornbread and buttermilk. My grandparents also put peanut butter in their coffee. That was good, too.

Anonymous said...

I grew up having cornbread and buttermilk as a meal. We were poor and didn't have much. But the cornbread and buttermilk was a treat! Today when I eat sourdough bread it reminds me of the taste from the cornbread and buttermilk I had as a child! I'm glad so many people enjoyed this too!

Anonymous said...

Cornbread and buttermilk makes for a great breakfast, except I like the cornbread made with some honey and baked until dark crispy edges, I like the contrast of slight sweetness with the bitter buttermilk. Also learned at a young age to eat stewed tomatoes and bread.

Anonymous said...

Brought up in Boston; but my father from W. Va. taught me the joys of buttermilk with cornbread. Sometimes he'd cut up some scallions and sprinkle some salt and pepper on it to make it more savory. I like it both ways and although he is now gone, I think of my father whenever I eat this satisfying dish!
Tom

Bunny Gray said...

A girl after my own heart! I grew up in Texas and if ever asked, "If this was your last meal on earth, what would it be?" my resounding answer was 'cornbread and buttermilk'! I would NEVER sugar my cornbread in the true southern tradition. I enjoyed reading your ramblings.

Anonymous said...

SOMEONE TOLD ME THEY USED REGULAR MILK WITH THEIR CORNBREAD. I TRIED IT BUT IT WILL NEVER REPLACE CORNBREAD AND BUTTERMILK. IT IS SO GOOD. I BAKE THE CORNBREAD IN AN IRON SKILLET. (no sugar) IT IS GOOD WITH BUTTER BUT BETTER WITH BUTTERMILK. I WAS WONDERING WHAT THE HEALTH BENEFITS ARE AND WAS TRYING TO FIND OUT ON THE INTERNET WHEN I CAME ACROSS YOU BLOG. DON'T KNOW HOW GOOD IT IS FOR ME BUTI KNOW IT IS GOOD TO ME.
ANONYMOUS FROM N.C.

Sweet Tea in Georgia said...

Sandy, I have never eaten buttermilk and cornbread, but I love buttermilk, nothing is better than a cold glass during the hot summer. I have never mixed cornbread and buttermilk together, but one of my favorites dishes is what my mother called egg bread, which is cornbread cooked with eggs and buttermilk. It is so good. When I was a child, one of our neighbor's mother lived with her, and she would sit on the porch everyday in her rocking eating buttermilk with cornbread crumbled in it.

Anonymous said...

omg im from detroit mi. i just ate the biggest bowl of buttermilk and cornbread. it was delicious! thanks granny miss you

Jessica said...

Hey I just typed in cornbread and buttermilke in google search and I came here. I too remember eating cornbread crumbled up in a tall glass with some buttermilk. Being a Kentucky girl who grew up in Ohio, it was nice to see someone else took joy in eating it too!
I remember dusting and putting the laundry out on the line. All this just back in the 80's.

Anonymous said...

I'm eating cornbread and buttermilk right now, in MIssouri! I'm originally from Arkansas. If God made any better food, he must've kept it for himself.

Anonymous said...

I grew up in southern Louisiana and I love cornbread and buttermilk, but my grandmother also got me eating corbread and regular milk sometimes topped woth fig preserves, its not the same taste, but it's also good.

Makeup MacGyver said...

I am so glad to find some fellow cornbread and buttermilk fans! Most people think it is super gross, but we know the truth! My granny started me on this way back in the day and I still love it. I like my cornbread room temperature (not hot) and crumbled in a glass. I also prefer the non-fat buttermilk over the full fat.

Anonymous said...

Hey I grew up in az but my grandparents were were from tn and buttermilk and cornbread (no sugar) is my favorite. My husband and kids think it's gross but they don't know what they're missing. We also eat fried potatoes, red gravy, and cornbread dressing. My husband family is from the north so he's never even heard of most this stuff lol. Fellow cornbread and buttermilk lover

Anonymous said...

I live in Louisiana and I LOVE cornbread with buttermilk. And it has to be the gritty cornbread...not the cake like kind. Another way to eat it (for those who don't care for buttermilk) is with sour cream. Yum!!!!

Anonymous said...

LOL I'm eating cornbread and buttermilk right now. I decided to google it to see if anybody ate it anymore.

My grandfather was the one that introduced it to me, I'm from NC and now in my 40's and still eat it when I have left over cornbread. I think I am the only one in my entire family that eats it.

Kambria Caldwell said...

My Aunt and grandmother are originally from Yazoo City, Mississippi and they always used to eat cornbread with cold buttermilk. It looked disgusting, but when I tasted it I fell in love. I have to go out and make me some tomorrow!!

tmomof6 said...

My Papaw was from Indiana. This morning I was missing him so bad. I made some cornbread last night & as I was crumbling it in the coffee mug I could almost hear him say,"Best breakfast ever is all, gotta be stale so you can still have the crispy bits in the buttermilk." Then I loaded it with black pepper like he would do all the while hearing him say, "And plenty o'pepper ain't nothin' t'be scared of neither. MMM-mh." Then I closed my eye's & had breakfast with Papaw. I just had to look up Cornbread & Buttermilk to see if anyone else felt the same about it and I am so glad to have found this site. So Good morning every one, I'm gonna go have another mug of breakfast with these fuzzy memories (& not feel so weird about it this time :)

Anonymous said...

I am from California, but my family is from Louisiana. I just have to say that I grew up on this stuff and can't believe that more people don't know about this or how good it is. I would tell Marvin not to knock it until he tries it. I just had a bowl of it and it is delish! Thanks for writing the article!

Anonymous said...

I see that this blog was started in 2006 and I'm sure that we're only a few that has happened upon it. I'm eating BM&CB right now. The only reason I came to this blog was because I wanted to find out how many calories was in it.. CB is fresh out the oven & still warm and BM is cold (just the way I like it), so for those that give it the "Yuck" factor.. don't knock it till you've tried it.

Anonymous said...

I'm also eating cornbread and buttermilk right now; decided to Google to see if I was the only one left and gratified to see I'm not. As others have said, the cornbread needs to be gritty vs. cakelike and not sweet. I like the buttermilk to be cold. I crumble up the cornbread in a tall glass, pour buttermilk over, then add salt and freshly cracked pepper. Good with green onions on the side. Unfortunately, it's hard to find high-quality buttermilk today. Most of it is regular milk that has been treated with an additive to make it sour -- yuck!! You want to find real buttermilk if possible, milk that is left over from churning butter. It should have flecks of real butter in it and it's never mucousy or slimy. I finally found a local store that sells a good brand. And I grew up in California too but my mom was from TN and brought the good ideas with her! When I was a kid I had no idea that other people didn't love cornbread and buttermilk. My husband is from CO and still can't bear to watch me eat it! His loss.

Anonymous said...

God, buttermilk and cornbread the trinity........MMMMMM

Anonymous said...

I THINK WE SHOULD PUT SOMETHING ON FACEBOOK FOR LIKES ON WHO LIKES BUTTERMILK AND CORNBREAD. MY MOM GOT ME HOOKED ON IT, AND 2 SISTERS TO. ALWAYS BRINGS BACK MEMORIES OF MY MOM. I JUST HAD A CUP FULL OF IT GOOD STUFF, IT STILL MAKES THE WIFE SICK WHEN I EAT IT, LOL. WOW ITS BEEN ABOUT 35 YRS AGO WHEN I FIRST HAD IT, I WAS 13.

becks-in-the-kitchen said...

Never had it, but my father loved it!

Anonymous said...

It's 4:00 a.m. here in Belleville Mi. and I am having 2 bowels of CB and BM. Mom from N.C. and she used to eat hers from a glass as well. I prefer a bowel because I can eat it faster...lol. And I also chop up onion in it and douse it with plenty of black pepper.

Nancy Morrow said...

I haven't read every single comment here, but after reading through several, I am concluding the cornbread and buttermilk is a southern thing. My mother-in-law grew up in Alabama. She raised her boys to enjoy cornbread and buttermilk. I had never head of such a thing until I married my husband. They would always crumble the cornbread into their glass of buttermilk and eat it with a spoon. And I agree, this is unsweetened cornbread. Delicious!