Cornmeal and Ham Pancakes
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
- 1 cup chopped Smithfield ham, or other cured ham
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 6 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups grated white cheddar cheese
- Chopped parsley
- Chopped chives
- Unsalted butter, accompaniment
- Cane syrup, accompaniment
- Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
- 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, Essence, and salt. In a medium bowl, beat the buttermilk, egg, and melted butter. Add to the dry ingredients and mix just until blended, being careful not to overmix. Fold in the ham.
Preheat a large, heavy skillet or griddle over medium-high heat. Lightly grease with enough vegetable oil to leave a film on the bottom, about 1 tablespoon. Working in batches, ladle the batter into the pan 1/4 cup at a time, being careful not to overcrowd. Cook until the pancakes are golden brown underneath and bubbles form on the surface, about 2 minutes. Turn and cook until golden brown on the second side, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a platter and place in the oven to keep warm. Add more oil to the pan as needed and repeat with the remaining batter.
In a nonstick saute pan, add vegetable oil to coat the bottom. Carefully crack each egg into a small bowl and then pour into the skillet and cook to desired doneness.Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.
Yield: about 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.