I believe this is on Eric's last meal list. We used to frequent an amazing restaurant in L.A. called Bandera. We loved many things on the menu and tried all the specials, but their jalapeno cheddar cornbread was something we always ordered. We even bought extra to bring home. I had asked the manager if she could tell me why it was so good, and she said "butter, cream, butter, and really hot jalapenos."
I never got the exact recipe, from them. This version comes dangerously close. The jalapeno pieces are intensely hot- but the bread itself is sweet and soft, while the butter and melty cheddar provide necessary tongue-coating fattiness. Serve as hot as you can eat it.
"If you prefer not to use heavy whipping cream, sub-in buttermilk."
Notes: Butter is unsalted.
JALAPENO CHEDDAR CORNBREAD
Ingredients: 1 cup fine cornmeal, 1/3 cup all-purpose flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt, 2 tbsp. sugar, 2 eggs beaten, 1 tsp. white vinegar, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1 can cream-style corn, 4 tbsp. melted butter, 1-1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, 2 tbsp. finely chopped jalapeno pepper.
1. Preheat oven to 375*, then grease an 8x8 8 inch baking dish.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder and sugar.
3. Make a well in the dry ingredients, pour the beaten egg, cream, vinegar and cream-style corn into the well. Whisk gently to combine, then fold into the dry ingredients until just combined. Don't over mix. Fold in melted butter.
4. Tip in shredded cheese and jalapeno pepper. Fold to distribute.
5. Spoon into the baking dish and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and firm. The top may crack slightly.
Tip: Unless super-tasters have eaten this cornbread, leave the ribs in the jalapeno when you chop it. Tap out the seeds, but don't scrape the light-colored membrane that the seeds attach to. You want that heat!