Makes Two 9×5 inch loaves
There are as many variations of cornbread as there are good bakers and adding sweet potatoes to crumbly cornbread isn’t a new idea, but it sure is a good one. This version combines the nutty, toasted flavor of stone-ground cornmeal with the sweetness and richly flavored sweet potato to produce a moist, not-to-sweet cornbread that would be perfect for breakfast, or with a bowl of homemade soup. Timothy and I enjoy it warm, thickly sliced and slathered with sweet butter and honey. We used it for my cornbread stuffing but it also makes a dynamite bread pudding which I’ll sure soon. I recommend using Bob’s Red Mill Fine Grind Cornmeal, or any other stone-ground yellow cornmeal. Do not use coarse-ground or white cornmeal. For my 🇿🇦 South African followers, you could use polenta if you can’t find stone-ground yellow cornmeal.
- 2 cups stone ground yellow cornmeal
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs, at room temperature
- 1½ cups full-fat sour cream
- 1½ pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 2 cups of cooked, cooled, mashed sweet potato (about 2 large or 3 medium) • see note
- Additional unsalted butter, a room temperature, for greasing the pans
- Preheat the oven to 375F (190C) degrees. Grease two 9 x 5 inch (23 x 13 cm) loaf pans and set aside.
- Combine the cornmeal and the sugar in a large bowl, then sift in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir with a whisk until well combined.
- In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add the sour cream, vanilla extract and melted butter and gently whisk until the mixture is uniformly creamy and thick. Stir in the mashed sweet potatoes until throughly blended. Add the sweet potato mixture to the cornmeal with a wooden spoon or large rubber spatula, just enough to moisten the dry ingredients. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared loaf pans and smooth the tops.
- Bake the loaves in the middle of oven for 1 hour 5 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and a wooden skewer inserted into the center of each loaf comes out clean.
- Transfer pan to a cooling rack and cool for 10 minutes, then turn the loaves out of the pans and set right-side up on the racks to cool completely before slicing or wrapping.
* Note: Do not use canned sweet potatoes as they tend to be mushy and the flavor is to “cooked” the freshly prepared potatoes, and the result is usually disappointing.