Original cornbread recipe from the Black Sea coast

Original cornbread recipe from the Black Sea coast

In our article "Almost a national dish - Hamsi Kizartma" we reported on the fish dish of fried anchovies, which is particularly popular on the Black Sea and the Aegean coast and was served to us by the Senyer family during our stay in Istanbul.

In addition to the traditional salad and the equally traditional Trabzon Ekmek, there was another type of bread that piqued our interest: homemade pan-fried cornbread.

The art of baking cornbread is unfortunately lost in many places

brot emin senyer 02When we asked, Emin explained the connection between the traditional Hamsi Kizartma and cornbread, which was once considered "poor people's food". In the past, as already mentioned, hamsi was served at almost every meal during the season.

The same was true for the cornbread. Before the mass-produced white bread made from wheat flour was introduced, cornbread was widespread because corn was much cheaper than wheat flour and was therefore considered a staple food. In the meantime, the art of baking cornbread has unfortunately been lost in many places, but there is a lack of real corn flour, which is hand-milled from special types of corn and is said to have a special grain size.

brot emin senyer 03Since it is almost impossible to make the usual, larger loaves of bread from corn flour, as is common with bread grains (wheat, rye, spelt), the dough must either be rolled out into a kind of flatbread or made more bakeable by adding wheat flour.

The type and ingredients vary greatly from region to region. In addition to some wheat flour, cornbread can also contain sugar, butter, milk or eggs. Cornbread is often lightened with a little baking powder and can then be baked, fried, deep-fried, or steamed.

You deliberately don't want the dough to be "smooth".

brot emin senyer 01Of course, we ask and are told that our cornbread was roasted over an open fire in a very special iron pan that is used exclusively for making cornbread.

The dough consists only of coarse corn flour, a little wheat flour, which has been kneaded with an egg and milk and a pinch of salt with a fork to form a thick, malleable dough.

The dough should not be “smooth”, but rather a little lumpy.

brot emin senyer 05Quantities and ingredients, which vary regionally:

2 cups cornmeal
1/2 cup flour (wheat, can be omitted)
1 pinch of salt
1 pinch of sugar
1 tsp baking soda
2 teaspoons of baking soda
1 egg
60 ml olive oil
250 ml milk

Bake in a lightly oiled iron pan for about 20 minutes. The bread is ready when it is firm when pressed and baked until golden yellow to slightly brown.

Please read as well:

Almost a national dish - Hamsi Kizartma (fried anchovies)

Karalahana Çorbası - Invitation to dinner at Hayâlî Saraç Emin


Life | Outdoors