It’s the first official post of 2015, yet somehow we’re halfway through January already. I’ve yet to ditch a resolution, but maybe that’s because I never made any in the first place. I’ve been thinking about what you said, though (thanks for taking my survey). I feel like I need to take 10,000 steps back before going forward to this Jiffy Cornbread recipe. Remember ninth grade public speaking class (or was it Seinfeld)? They told you to imagine the audience naked before delivering a speech to help ease the nerves.
I don’t go to that extreme before writing each post, but I do pretend I’m writing in a notebook well hidden from the world, tucked between my headboard and mattress. Surely my mom has come across it a time or two, but she’d never say anything. It’s safe, private, and all my own. Free from ridicule, and buts, and what-ifs. A year or two from now, I’ll read back through my words to laugh at my ignorance and smile at my growth.
Until I remember I’ve painstakingly pressed publish to the world over 390 times. It hasn’t gotten easier for me. Most days I’m too nervous to recognize that you’re sitting on the other side of my private notebook. Hi. It’s probably because I’ll never understand why you visit this space again and again. Thank you. Thank you for reading the words that aren’t always so eloquently sewn together. The words that, for me, are an ongoing exercise to create. Thank you for glossing over thousands of grammatical errors and ill-balanced whites of my images. Thank you for holding my words very gently in your hands. Thank you for listening and replying. For making the things I love to make and telling me you made them too. Thank you, on the other side of the screen. Your presence here is validating.
Because at the end of the day, no matter how loud, private, or quiet we are, we want to be heard. On the cusp of thirty, some days I still feel like the little girl tugging on the pant leg of my parents saying, “Look at what I did.” The question of, “Are you pleased?” is silent but understood.
It’s not necessarily a resolution, but this year I want to own my half-thoughts, incomplete sentences, and ill-balanced whites. I want to create more and worry less. I want to say hi and thank you rather than pretending we don’t see each other. I want more awkward silences in conversations because I’m actually having them. I want to be pleased with myself no matter the answer to the question. They call yoga a practice. I’m beginning to think life is just that, too.
Are we talking about life or cornbread? I’m not sure. That line is much too blurry here, but I like it that way. This Jiffy Cornbread recipe mimics the one I grew up with. On nights my mom made chili, I was in charge of mixing up that iconic blue Jiffy box. Because of it, I like my cornbread sweet and served from a muffin tin. With an extra pat of butter if you really want to know.
On nights my mom made chili, it was my job to make the cornbread. 1 box of Jiffy, 1 egg, and a bit of milk. I like my cornbread sweet because of it. I can’t have it any other way. If you close you eyes, you might think you’re biting into an original Jiffy Cornbread muffin. This recipe comes together nearly as fast as the box. You’ll most likely beat the oven preheat time. If serving a crowd, double or triple the recipe.
2/3 c. all purpose unbleached flour 1/2 c. finely ground cornmeal, non GMO
scant 1/4 c. pure cane sugar 3/4 tsp. aluminum-free baking powder 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 c. whole milk 2 tbsp. oil, mild-tasting 1 large egg
1 tbsp. salted butter
Preheat oven to 400°F degrees. Line muffin tin. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, stir together dry ingredients. In a separate small bowl, stir together wet ingredients until evenly combined.
Add the wet mixture into the dry and stir together until just combined, no more.
Evenly scoop batter into muffin tins.
Bake for 12-15 minutes.
Brush butter over muffin tops. Serve warm.
Note: For a fluffier cornbread, use 1 teaspoon of baking powder and bake on the lower end of the listed time.