Y'know, trips to the mailbox just aren't what they used to be, are they? In fact, they're hardly necessary. A bill or two, a statement or two. The odd old-fashioned if much-appreciated thank you note. But after that? Nothing's left except that which hits the recycling bin with barely a glance.
But when Southern Living magazine hits the mailbox? Be still, my beating heart! Pour a cup of coffee, now please, every month I want to settle in right away, thank you very much. (If this sounds like a paid advertisement, banish the idea! I'm a paid subscriber. Southern Living knows this blogger from nobody.)
Mine may be a northern soul but page after page of Southern Living charms me, the gardening, the artisan wares, the home fashions, the clothes, the travel, the entertaining ideas and yes, the recipes! There was a time, the 1980s and even 1990s I think, when Southern Living recipes all started with processed foods: I was reminded of that when culling cookbooks awhile back, paging through that-era annual Southern Living editions and plopped them onto the book-sale pile. Today Southern Living recipes are mostly approachable, made-from-scratch, family-friendly recipes with a southern twist.
I clipped this recipe for Sweet Potato Cornbread back in 2012, it won't take two years to make it again! At first I was tempted to just add sweet potato to either my long-time favorite Skillet Cornbread or to this made-it-soooo-many-times Simple Cast Iron Southern Corn Bread. But the ratio of ingredients was so different – five eggs, really? an entire cup of sour cream? – that I stuck with Southern Living's ingredient list and am glad of it.
This cornbread recipe calls for a full two cups of sweet potatoes, that's an entire pound! That's in contrast to other recipes that add a tablespoon or two, just for vegetable-virtue. This cornbread is all about the sweet potato! Its presence is obvious at first glance, thanks to the lovely golden color. But it's also present in the moist crumb. Lawdy-lawdy, you can even taste the sweet potato!
I did employ two of my favorite tricks for excellent cornbread, choosing coarse stone-ground cornmeal (a whole food, with the germ intact) and pre-heating the cast iron skillet for a chewy crust. You're gonna love this cornbread, I think!