Upside Down Jimmy Red Corn Pear Cake

That's certainly a mouthful! But bake this easy skillet cake, and once you take a bite, that will be a mouthful that is so easily digested and gone way too soon. My recipe is available to print at this link.

There's a story about this Jimmy Red Corn. A red heirloom variety that was saved from extinction by a handful of people who each took less than a handful of kernels to plant, nurture and grow, Jimmy Red is now served as grits at some of the finest Charleston restaurants and by Highwire Distillery to make their extra fine Revival bourbon.  Chef Sean Brock praised the red heirloom kernels and developed recipes for his (at the time) two Charleston restaurants, Husk and McCrady's. He has also developed his own Jimmy Red Cornbread mix, which is totally worth the price of the package. A tip: Follow Sean's directions exactly, for the best version of this rare cornbread.

I use this unusual and mythical product in my home kitchen to make cornbread. It's the only cornbread that I make, and I purchase the cornmeal from Edisto Island's Marsh Hen Mill whose owner, Greg Johnsman, helped to cultivate and revive it in the Charleston area. Locally, I buy it from Main & Maxwell.

My Dewey and I love this cornbread so much, that I've been dreaming of new ways to use it. It's taken a little time to think through developing this recipe. While I want new ways of using this cornbread, I want it to shine. I want to taste that distinct Jimmy Red flavor and not mask it with the addition of too many ingredients. Cardamom, a little sugar and pears. Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you to my Jimmy Red Corn Pear Cake--upside-down style. It's still made in a cast-iron skillet, but it's served at the end of a meal with a large spoonful of vanilla ice cream.'s gluten-free! Here's the recipe.


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