EDITOR’S NOTE (January 9, 2019): Updated recipe and recipe video (bottom of page). If a slightly sweet cornbread is preferred, use my recipe for Homemade Self-Rising Cornbread. After pouring cornbread batter in skillet, sprinkle crumbled cracklings (fried pork) on top before baking.
Savory cornbread seasoned with crumbled fried pork fat back (aka cracklings). Delicious as is, drizzled with honey or maple syrup. Excellent with fresh collard greens.
The cured pork salt pork fat back is very, very salty. If some salt is preferred in fried cracklings, boil 5 minutes. Drain the water before frying. To eliminate all of the salt, boil 20 to 25 minutes. Drain the water before frying.
IMPORTANT: Although fried pork is tender, the hard outside edge (meat skin) can damage teeth. Remove hard edges and discard. Do not add to cornbread batter.
Enjoy the recipe!
Savory cornbread seasoned with crumbled fried pork fat back (aka cracklings). Delicious alone, drizzled with honey, or maple syrup. Excellent with fresh collard greens. Recipe and photography by Beverly Davis for CornbreadMillionaire.com.
Place all ingredients on the kitchen counter. Use an 8" skillet (thick cornbread) OR a 9" skillet (thin cornbread). Cornbread will be baked in the same skillet in which cracklings are fried.
Place 5 slices of cold pork fat back strips in preferred sized cast iron skillet or other cookware. Cover with about 1/2 cup of water. Add more water if necessary.
To decrease salt, simmer over low-medium heat for 5 minutes. Drain water before frying.
To remove all salt, cover with 1 cup of water. Boil 20-25 minutes over low heat. Drain the cloudy water before frying.
Leave meat in skillet over low-medium heat. Meat will produce a little fat (also called lard). Add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil.
Fry until light golden brown on both sides (3-4 minutes each side). WARNING: Place a lid over skillet as a shield of protection from popping HOT fat.
Turn off heat. Drain cracklings on paper towels. To protect teeth, remove hard edges (aka meat skins). Crumble soft cracklings. Set aside. Leave drippings in skillet.
Make the cornbread (recipe below).
Homemade White Cornbread
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In medium sized bowl, combine cornmeal mix, flour, sugar (if using), eggs, and buttermilk. Stir until smooth. Small lumps okay. Set aside.
Over medium heat, heat skillet with drippings until hot. Pour in cornbread batter. Sprinkle top with crumbled cracklings.
Reduce oven to 375. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean and cornbread is golden brown.
In a medium sized bowl, sift together 1 cup of all-purpose flour, 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
Use ONLY 1/2 cup of this mixture instead of self-rising flour. Save remainder in a zippered bag or lidded container. Refrigerate until ready to use.