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Hot Water Cornbread

I love cornbread, especially hot water cornbread. It’s simple, delicious, and perfect on a cold winter night. For me, it’s the taste of childhood and one taste brings back those carefree days and most especially, helping my grandma cook.

2 cups Cornmeal
1/2 cup self-rising flour
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp butter, melted
Boiling water*

* I use about 1 1/2 cups of water, but I like mine to be the consistency of a very thick pancake batter, but many people like it a little thicker. You can easily make it thicker by using less water, then rolling into 1-inch balls, patting flat, and cooking.

1) In a heat safe large bowl combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, and salt.

2) Stir in the melted butter, then add the boiling water until the mixture is the consistency you like.

3) Cook the cornbread in a heated skillet til golden brown on both sides. Once done, remove to a paper towel lined plate or pan.

These are so delicious with a little butter or honey, and they’re definitely an integral part of our New Year’s Day meal. I wouldn’t dare risk the chance of starting the year off on a bad note by not serving them, alongside turnips (for wealth in the new year), black eyed peas (good luck). .  . these bad boys represent gold, something I wouldn’t mind having more of 😉

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Mexican Chicken – My mom’s favorite!

One of my mother’s favorite dishes is a simple variation on the King Ranch Chicken recipe. I don’t know why, but Mama (I admit it, I still call her Mama) who doesn’t like cheese or hot peppers and will not eat dishes containing either, loves Mexican Chicken. She’d probably eat it two or three times a week if she could get me to cook it.

I’ll admit I haven’t cooked it in a couple of months. So, one night last week, Mama had had it, and she put her foot down and demanded I fix her favorite dish for supper. Allright. . . allright, I’m exaggerating. She didn’t quite do all of that, but she did go grocery shopping and have all of the ingredients waiting for me that afternoon. I took it as a subtle nudge that that was what was for supper.

Here we go. . .

 The Ingredients:
5-6 chicken breasts, cooked, shredded or diced into bite-sized pieces
1 (10.5 oz ) can of cream of chicken
1 (10.5 oz) can of cream of mushroom
1 (10 oz) can of Ro-Tel Mild diced tomatoes & green chiles
1/2 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 (8 oz) bag of Velveeta Shreds cheese
1 (11.5) bag of Doritos nacho cheese tortilla chips, crushed

One of the main ingredients, chicken.

1) I usually boil the chicken, seasoned with salt and pepper, of course, but you can also roast it if you want. Then pull it off the bone and either, shred it or dice it into bite-sized pieces.

Crushed tortilla chips.

2) Crush the tortilla chips, then spread evenly into a casserole dish. Make sure to reserve some chips for the top of the dish.

3) Spread the cooked chicken evenly on top of the chips.
4) Combine the cream of chicken, cream of mushroom, evaporated milk, & the Ro-Tel tomatoes & green chiles. Then, spread the mixture evenly on top of the chicken.

5) Sprinkle the shredded cheese on top.

Just before going in the oven.

6) Top with the remaining chips. Bake in a 350F preheated oven for about 30 minutes (give or take) or until the chips just begin to brown & the cheese is melted.