Prep 15 mins
Cook 25 mins
"The Creek Indians in Tennessee and Georgia were using corn ... for generations before the European settlers arrived.... This simple list of ingredients found in this famous Southern quick bread resembles Irish soda or wheaten and I cannot help but imagine how the Ulster-Scots settlers improvised and adapted to the new found colourful cornmeal. "I love the crunchy outside contrasted with the soft cake-like consistency of this bread whilst the fennel seeds provide an interesting liquorish flavor that blends perfectly with the sweet figs and salty cheese!" By Judith McLoughlin in The Ulster-Scot, official publication of the Ulster-Scots Agency, April 2011
- 2 tablespoons melted butter (or bacon fat)
- 1 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup stoneground cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup irish cheddar cheese (grated)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil (or melted butter)
- 1 egg (beaten)
- 8 figs (or 1/2 cup dried figs, remove stems and chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fennel seed
- Preheat oven to 400F / 200C degrees.
- Grease a small 8" cast iron skillet or baking pan with butter. Place in oven to preheat.
- Sift flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder into a mixing bowl.
- In another bowl whisk together the buttermilk, vegetable and egg.
- Combine wet and dry ingredients and stir with a large metal spoon to mix.
- Fold in figs and fennel seeds.
- Bake for 25 minutes.
- Remove from oven and set skillet on a rack to cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.