RITA ROWLAND / DOWN SOUTH DELIGHTS CATERING
1/4 c vegetable oil
1 c buttermilk
1 and 1/4 cup buttermilk self rising cornmeal mix- we use Martha White
2 sticks butter- separated
1 c diced country ham
1/4 c diced Italian parsley or 3 tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp. Garlic powder
2 c shredded pepper jack cheese
2 c yellow or white onions- cut into 1/2 inch half moons
1 tbsp. Sugar
Preheat oven to 400. In a large skillet melt 1 stick of butter and add onions. Sprinkle with the sugar. Cook on low, stirring often until onions are reduced to 1/2 cup and are a dark caramel color. Set aside. Place ham in a medium skillet and cook on medium/high, stirring until its lightly browned and is hot. Set aside. Divide oil between a 12 muffin tin and set aside. In a large mixing bowl place cornmeal mix, egg, buttermilk, garlic powder, parsley, and other stick of butter that has been melted. Whisk until smooth then fold in onions, pepper jack cheese and sauteed ham. Place the muffin tin with oil in oven for 5-7 minutes so that its hot, but not smoking. Divide your batter evenly between(an ice cream scoop works best!) the muffin tins. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until muffins are firm to the touch. You can brush with melted butter the last 5 minutes to get a nice brown on the tops. Let set for 5 minutes and serve warm. Makes 12 muffins.
* These are great served with strawberry jam or honey butter. The sweetness compliments the heat of the cheese as well as the ham.