Johnny Cake 8


I have no rhythm. None. I come by it honestly, with parents who can’t hold a tune or keep a beat. Should I ever have children I already plan to enroll them in dance lessons. Yes, boys too.

Because when you look like a hippo trying to be a flamingo on the dance floor, it’s an all-butt, no-hips, side-to-side, watch-out-for-the-elbows kind of experience. If this were the 18th century where women were required to be graceful and elegant on the dance floor in order to win their mate, I’d be an old maid.

In reality, it’s simply meant a few crushed toes, bumped heads, and twirling apologies. See, even if I’m not any good and maybe should abstain I can, I do – I LOVE to dance.

One of my favorite guilty pleasures is dancing in the kitchen when I’m home alone. I crank up the music, beat some pots, and rattle some pans. Whisking and dancing can get a little tricky. As can dancing and frying, rolling, and tossing. I’d advise pausing for the chopping. All in all though, cooking and dancing can be done and should be done. It’s really quite liberating.

This cornbread recipe – Johnny Cake – I am about to share with you is completely dance-cook safe. Trust me, I tried it out. It was given to me last May by a wonderful woman named Marli.
Last year, I held a birthday give-a-way right here on Baguette Taste – Wonder Bread Budget. Readers submitted their favorite recipe with an explanation why. It was so much fun. I still can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with food. Though it’s taken me a long time, I am making the wonderful recipes I received last year and sharing them also with you!

Why This is Marli’s Favorite:

I have many favorite recipes, but I’m going back to my early childhood when I first began to have a favorite food and that was my Nana and Papa’s Johnny Cake. This is a delectable, sweet, moist corn bread served with maple syrup and of course garlic sausage. When I was a very young, I spent a great deal of time at my grandparents house. (My dad was away at baking school in the Midwest and my mother and I lived with her parents for that year.) Mom had to work and my Nana took care of me. Every Sunday, or so it seemed, was Johnny Cake day with Papa’s wonderful garlic sausage. To make this an extra special meal for me, they would make my Johnny Cake in my own little cake pan. I am now a grandmother and this recipe has been used time and time again with my own children as they have grown up. Now, they in turn have the recipe in their cookbooks. My dear husband has taken to cooking frequently at our house and this is now one of his favorite things to make on a lazy Sunday morning. Enjoy!

Thanks Marli. Now, I just need to get some of your Papa’s garlic sausage.

Johnny Cake

1 Egg
1 cup buttermilk
¼ cup oil (vegetable or a mild olive oil)
1 cup flour
¾ cup sugar
½ tsp salt
1½ tsp baking soda
2/3 cup cornmeal

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch cake tin with non-stick cooking spray.

Beat the egg, buttermilk, and oil well. Combine salt, flour, sugar, baking soda, and cornmeal in a separate bowl. Sift to combine.

Add egg buttermilk mixture and stir until just combined. Pour into prepared baking tin. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes. Remove from oven and try to let it cool slightly before serving.


About Mikaela Cowles

I’m a food-gobbling, book-reading, aspiring photog. Born and raised in Seattle, I love dancing in the rain, bouquets of fresh basil and green grass between my toes. I like how kneading butter into flour makes my fingers soft. I’m passionate about all things sweet potato. I prefer my coffee black, my scotch on the rocks and my steak bloody. I hunt, when I have time; play basketball; and hike. I’ve been known to laugh so hard I hyperventilate. And, I’m the owner of Making Language Count, a boutique freelance writing business.


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