My boyfriend and I spend quite a bit of time in the kitchen. He’s fantastic at the “real food” thing and figuring out which spices and seasonings work well together, all the while not measuring a thing. On the other hand, I’m such a measurement stickler. I will try and help him make dinner sometimes and he’ll tell me to “throw in a dash of garlic powder” and I will immediately ask well how much is a dash? A teaspoon? A tablespoon? When you’ve spent years learning that if you put in 1/4 instead of 1/2 of a tsp of baking powder, your dessert will turn out completely wrong, a “dash” is not exactly a part of your vocabulary.
So over the past year or two I’ve been watching him, and I think I’m starting to get a little bit better, but I’m still a sucker for my measuring cups and instructions.
This past weekend we invited a group of friends over and had a fried chicken dinner party. He made the chicken, and I focused on dessert (brownies and ice cream) and cornbread. Lastly, we had each friend bring a side that went along with the chicken, so we ended up with garlic mashed potatoes, charred brussels sprout, swiss chard, and a salad. I think the key to a successful dinner party, when you have a kitchen as small as ours, is to assign an easy dish for each of your guests to bring, that way the kitchen doesn’t explode with dishes and ingredients. Whenever we try and do it all ourselves, we spend half of the time in the kitchen either cooking or cleaning. This way, we can actually enjoy some time with everyone.
I made these super flavorful jalapeño cornbread muffins from The Novice Chef’s blog, that I had been eyeing for a while. I personally am not big into spicy food, purely because my face and mouth get so hot even with such a small amount of spice, but I decided to give these guys a shot.
Throwing together the ingredients was so simple, and I had everything around the house except for the jalapeño and the green onions. I also am a huge fan of dishes that only require 2 dishes, I mean that is just a success in itself.
I used half of a diced up jalapeño in my version, instead of the full that the original recipe called for, just because I didn’t want it to be too spicy. I garnished half of them with a slice of jalapeño, and the other half I left as is.
I use an ice cream scooper any time that I make muffins or cupcakes because it portions out the perfect amount of batter for each tin. Instead of using muffin liners (which are wasteful and unnecessary in this case) I just sprayed the pan with cooking spray.
Since I made these guys a few hours before eating, I popped them in the oven on a baking sheet with the other items that were warming up at about 400˚F for a few minutes right before serving.
This cornbread has so much flavor in it, unlike so many of the store bought boxes. Don’t get me wrong though, sometimes that box of Jiffy is what you crave. But these muffins truly are delicious, and the perfect paring with fried chicken.
The chicken was too good to resist for even just a moment