Monday, May 21, 2012

Chive and Mushroom Cornmeal Loaf


Chives are abundant now, their cheery blossoms blooming in my yard and waving from curbside gardens as I take walks around our neighborhood.  The sturdy green stems burst with delicate onion flavor and enhance salads, eggs and any dish they are snipped into.


When I saw this month’s #baketogether challenge, I knew chives had to play a role. Abby Dodge shares her delectable recipe for Cornmeal Buttermilk Muffins and invites us to play around and get creative – always fun!


My thoughts were already on a savory track with the chives, so drawing on a favorite omelet combination I sliced baby bella mushrooms and grated Parmesan cheese. Whenever possible these days, I swap out flours to try different ones. This time I included barley flour with the cornmeal and all-purpose flour.


I recently found a couple of brioche pans at a local thrift store, so I baked the batter as a loaf rather than muffins. Let me just say, this is like cornbread elevated to new heights! The loaf is extremely moist, studded with mushrooms and flecks of chives, rich with Parmesan and a bit of zip from lemon zest. When sliced, it makes a nice little appetizer to nibble on with a glass of white wine. Perfect for a summer afternoon!


Chive and Mushroom Cornmeal Loaf
Adapted from Abby Dodge’s Cornmeal Buttermilk Muffins
Makes 1 loaf (serves 8)

8 ounces mushrooms, sliced (your choice of mushroom)
Olive oil to sauté
3/4 cup barley flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup ground cornmeal
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/3 cup snipped chives
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 eggs, room temperature
6 tablespoons canola oil
Zest of 1lemon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a brioche or loaf pan and set aside.  In a medium sized pan, warm a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat high and sauté the mushrooms until they release juices and begin to brown, about 10 minutes.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, cornmeal, baking powder and salt.  Stir in the chives and Parmesan cheese.  In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs and canola oil.  Pour over the dry ingredients and add the mushrooms.  Using a rubber spatula, gently fold until just blended (don’t worry if there are a few lumps).  Do not over mix.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake until golden and a skewer comes out clean, about 45 minutes.  Let cool for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and serve in wedges.

16 comments:

  1. I love it in the brioche pan, so beautiful and I love your variation on the recipe. Am waiting for my chives to get as big and beautiful as yours are. Love this recipe!

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    1. Thank you, Suzanne! This was a fun recipe to play with - I think I'll try a sweet variation sometime(it's important to balance the savory with some sweet, right?).

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  2. Great idea...and some of my favorite flavors too. I love the shape; very nice job. And now I'm peering out the window to see if I have any chives yet!

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    1. Thank you, Barbara! The brioche shape is always so pretty - part of the reason I was excited to discover pans when wandering through the thrift shop. I hope your chives pop up soon! :)

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  3. I love your version of Abby's bread! My chives are going crazy too, and this is the perfect way to use them. And I love the shape of your bread loaf - what a great idea :-)

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    1. Thank you, Susan! Abby's recipe was a terrific one to get creative with this month. Enjoy some chive love!

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  4. Mmm, this looks so good! Time to get my scissors and head outside for some chives!

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    1. Thank you very much! I need to snip some more chives, too...so many ways to gobble them up.

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  5. This is just what I need for all the chives in our backyard!

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    1. I love how hearty and dependable chives are - they just pop up every year no matter what. I can't say that for everything in our garden that should be emerging about now...

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  6. It's so cute in your ruffled pan. I need to get one of those!

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    1. Thanks, Mikaela! I found it at Value Village - one of those "yes!" moments.

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  7. I can't believe you found brioche pans at a thrift store! I guess I need to go thrifting more often. What a find!

    This cornbread sounds so amazing. What a fabulous accompaniment to a simple soup or salad.

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    1. Thanks, Lauren! The brioche pan find was indeed a thrill. I also found an adorable little walnut grinder that attaches to a Mason jar - I love poking around and discovering old treasures!

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  8. Beautiful Hannah! I think it would be perfect any time of year :) I love chives & love trying new flours....a pantry rather full of all sorts! But I have never come across barley flour....I must check it out :)

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    1. Thank you, Mairi! Hopefully you come across barley flour sometime. It's become one of my favorites. Kim Boyce's strawberry barley scones (in Good to the Grain) are beyond good.

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