The following recipe is based on Susan Spicer's mom's spoon bread but "jazzed up" a bit with the addition of onion, garlic, and a cup of grated white cheddar cheese that gets mixed into the batter as well as sprinkled on top just prior to baking.
The book that it comes from, Spicer's Crescent City Cooking, is our Cook the Book book of the week, and we'll be featuring recipes from it daily.
- 1/4 pound (1 stick) butter, cut in small pieces, plus more for greasing
- Dry, unseasoned bread crumbs
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 cups milk
- 1 cup cornmeal
- Salt and pepper
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 cup grated white cheddar cheese, plus extra for topping
Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter a 2-quart casserole or 8 individual ramekins and coat with bread crumbs. Shake out excess crumbs.
Melt the butter in a 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Add milk and bring almost to the boil. Whisk in cornmeal and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture has thickened, about 5 minutes. Season generously with salt and pepper.
Remove from heat and let cool.
In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites until they're stiff but still creamy.
Beat the egg yolks into the cornmeal mixture, then fold in the egg whites, a third at a time. Fold in the cheese and pour into casserole or spoon into ramekins.