When I first started stocking my kitchen as an adult with supplies, one of the first items I acquired was the workhorse of my kitchen: a cast iron skillet. As a son of the South, I grew up eating cornbread as muffins or squares cut from a baking pan or iron skillet. Within months, I started making simple cornbread fritters in my skillet. I later added ingredients like whole corn kernels, garlic, peppers, mushrooms, etc. to make vegetable fritters. For this recipe, I used leftover ingredients from other meals in my kitchen: andouille sausage, a jalapeño pepper, a red bell pepper, and scallions. I added some shredded Colby Jack cheese and seasoning to the batter and smoked the peppers for extra flavor. Only your imagination limits the possible ingredients for corn fritters, so be creative.
Corn fritters make a satisfying lunch or snack. The first fritters from the skillet cook in 6 minutes (1/3 of the time it would take to bake muffins or a loaf of bread). They taste so good: I usually burn my mouth eating the first fritter to come right out of the skillet! Corn fritters taste best within a few minutes of removing them from the pan. You can add butter if you like, but I prefer them without. The fritters keep well for leftovers. Use a skillet to reheat each side for about a minute (the microwave turns reheated fritters into rubber). I plan to eat a fried or poached egg on top of one of these for breakfast. Yum!
Smoked Pepper Corn Fritters
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1 jalapeño cut in half lengthwise
- 2 oz. Andouille sausage, diced
- 1 cup self-rising cornbread mix
- 1 egg
- 1.25 cups buttermilk
- 4 tbsp butter, melted
- 1/2 cup, Colby Jack or Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
- 1 scallion, chopped
- 1/2 tsp, Creole seasoning
- 1/2 tsp, fresh ground pepper
- Place both halves of the peppers skin side down in a Camerons stovetop smoker and smoke for 30 minutes on medium heat.
- While the peppers smoke, sauté andouille sausage until crispy in an iron skillet. Set aside.
- Combine cornbread mix, egg, buttermilk and butter in a large bowl and mix thoroughly.
- Remove peppers from smoker and place in a covered container to cool for 15 minutes. Dice peppers when cool.
- Thoroughly fold peppers, sausage, scallion, cheese and seasonings into the cornbread batter.
- Heat a seasoned cast iron skillet. Use a small ladle to pour batter into the skillet into fritters no more than 4 inches in diameter. The size of your skillet will determine whether you can make 3-4 of the fritters at a time. Take care that you don’t crowd the fritters so that you can easily flip them, 3-4 minutes a side. Start with 3 fritters your first round in the skillet.
- Serve fritters by themselves or with your favorite condiments (butter, hot sauce, salsa, pico de gallo, sriracha, etc.)