Cracklings are small pieces of pork fat roasted or fried until crispy. According to Dictionary.com, a hoecake[hoh-keyk] is an unleavened cake made with flour or cornmeal. Decades ago, it was originally baked on a hoe over an open fire. Now, hoecakes are usually cooked on a griddle or in a skillet on top of the stove. For this recipe, cornbread batter is cooked like a pancake in delicious seasoned drippings. Makes one 10" thin cornbread hoecake.
1 cup self-rising yellow or white cornmeal mix
(I used white)
1/2 cup self-rising white flour
1 tablespoon sugar (optional)
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup whole buttermilk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup cracklings
In medium-sized bowl, combine cornmeal mix, flour, and sugar (if using). Add eggs and buttermilk. Stir until smooth. Set aside. Add vegetable oil to a 10" cast iron skillet. Warm over low heat. Add salt and cracklings. Stir constantly for 3 to 4 minutes. Cracklings and oil will be light brown. Turn off heat. Use a slotted spoon to scoop cracklings from skillet. Add to batter and stir. Warm skillet (with oil/crackling crumbs) over low heat for 2 minutes. Pour in batter. Smooth with back of spoon. Cook over low heat 4-5 minutes or until edges look dry. Flip and cook 3 to 4 more minutes. Slice and serve hot with salted butter, honey, or maple syrup.