Johnny Cake… Hoe Cake… Journey Cake… many names have been given to the simple corn cake. It’s easy to prepare. It stores well and is very versatile.
Using a waffle iron saves time because there is one less pan to clean up and it reduces the cook time by at least half that of the traditional pan fry method.
This is my basic Johnny Cake recipe
- 1 Cup Corn Meal
- 1½ Cup Water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Plug in your waffle iron and set to medium to highest heat. Varies based on your iron.
- Boil the 1½ cups water to boil in a medium/large pot.
- Add the 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon sugar.
- When water reaches a boil slowly pour in the 1 Cup of Corn Meal. Stir constantly.
- When the mix reaches the texture of corn meal mush, turn off heat.
- Spoon batches of the mix into your pre-greased (non stick spray) waffle Iron.
- Wait for your iron to indicate the cook time is finished and gently lift the iron open.
- Use a wooden utensil ( I use a wooden chopstick ) to gently remove the cake from the iron.
The video outlines my basic procedure. I stray from ‘tradition’ by using my waffle iron because it is fast, creates a nice crust and is a shape that my family is familiar with.
Cracking my own corn meal from popcorn gives the Johnny Cake a toasted flavor that you won’t get from pre-ground corn meal as well.
- This is a baseline recipe that can be adjusted to your tastes.
- Create different flavors and textures by replacing some or all of the liquid with milk or even stocks or broths to create different flavors from sweet to savory.
- Experimenting with different sugars (honey, maple syrup, cane, brown…) can be fun, family friendly cooking time.
- Think “Polenta” sometimes to find ways to take the Johnny Cake from comfort food to Gourmet.
- WAFFLE IRON USE: I use the highest setting on my waffle iron but no two appliances are the same. You may have to try a few batches if you decide to use the iron instead of the traditional pan fry.
WAFFLE IRON CLEANING: If needed, use a basic water/cornmeal only mix and spread it in the waffle iron to cover the whole cooking surface and cook it at the highest setting (at least on my iron). This will grab most of the mess if you have sticky and burnt left overs in your iron. You may need to let it cool and use a pastry brush to sweep out any remaining mess as well.