Friday, May 7, 2021

Spring Fling: Strawberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake

Juicy strawberries stud the golden top of this simple southern skillet cake.  It's made using one bowl and your cast iron skillet!

Strawberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake

I grew up eating my mom's cornbread which to people in the South shouldn't be sweet.    But when you use cornmeal in a cake, boy oh boy, that cake comes out with a wonderful texture and slighlty sweet.  This is my Strawberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake and it will be the cake of the summer!  This cake is slightly sweet, buttery and moist on the inside and has crispy edges from baking it in a cast iron skillet.  It's filled with strawberries, a little vanilla, and a little lemon zest.  You end up with a one layer cake that's the perfect little something to quench your sweet cravings.

This cake is perfect for Mother's Day.  You can serve it for dessert, brunch, or breakfast.  Serve it with a dusting of powdered sugar, whipped cream, or even ice cream for dessert to remember.  Oh, and did I mention that this cake is made in one bowl?  Yes, an electric mixer is not required.  The batter comes together easily and makes this cake a joy to make.  Be prepared to make this with different fruit all summer long.   Enjoy!

What Ingredients do I need?

  • butter
  • eggs
  • sour cream
  • vanilla
  • all purpose flour
  • yellow cornmeal
  • sugar
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • lemon zest
  • strawberries
  • Note:  you will need a 10" cast iron skillet for this recipe!

Substitutions and Variations

  • You can create variations by using different fruit.  Any berry or stone fruit would work perfectly.  
  • Use yogurt instead of the sour cream.  Make sure to add the baking soda.
  • Use orange zest instead of lemon for a different citrus spin.
  • Try adding chocolate chips instead of fruit.

Kitchen Tips and Notes

  • Cast iron skillets work best for this recipe as it will create the crispy bottom and edges that other oven-proof skillets won't.  
  • Use a 10" cast iron skillet for the best results.
  • Slicing the strawberries instead of chopping them creates a pretty look.
  • For an extra dash of sweetness sprinkle the top of the cake with sparkle or coarse sugar before placing it in the oven.
  • The batter should turn out thick.  Spread it evenly in the bottom of the pan.
  • Preheat your cast iron skillet along with the oven to create a sizzling environment for the cake.  It creates the crispy edges.

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  • Strawberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake

serves 8

9 Tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup yellow cornmeal
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced

Take a 10" cast iron skillet and place it in the oven.  Turn the oven on 350 degrees to preheat while the skillet is in the oven.

In a large bowl, add flour, sugar, cornmeal, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and lemon zest.  Stir to combine and set aside.

In a medium microwave-safe bowl, add 8 tablespoons (1 stick) of butter.  Microwave on high in 30 second intervals until melted.  Allow to cool 5 minutes.  Add in sour cream, eggs, and vanilla.  Mix to combine.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until mixed. The batter should be thick.

Remove the hot skillet from the oven and add 1 Tablespoon of butter to the bottom to melt.  Add 1/2 of the cake batter, spreading out in an even layer over the butter.  Add 1/2 of the strawberries on top of the batter.  Drop the remaining batter, by the spoonful, over the strawberries. You do not have to cover all areas.  Top with the remaining strawberries.

Place in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes until golden brown on top and a toothpick comes out clean when you test the center of the cake.  Allow to cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.  Cut and serve.

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