So many uses for buttermilk

Published 9:15 pm Friday, October 10, 2008

You know there are so many uses for so many different foods.

The one thing I think is so versatile is buttermilk. You can literally use it for about anything!

Growing up, my Grandmother always ate buttermilk and cornbread. I used to think that was the most disgusting thing in the world.

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Now a days I wish I had a cup of buttermilk with some homemade cornbread.

My Grandmother could make cornbread that looked like a pound cake.

I also use buttermilk for batter when frying certain things, like certain types of fish and chicken. Buttermilk, of course, has a thick consistency so it can hold certain seasonings well. I always season up the buttermilk with all sorts of different spices when using it for frying.

A common misconception with buttermilk is no one really looks at buttermilk as a dessert. I was outside the other day talking to my neighbor. He was telling me about his trip to Texas and how he stopped at this restaurant and had a piece of buttermilk pie for dessert.

Along in the conversation he told me it was one of his all time favorite desserts. I was telling him how we use to eat it down at the Gulf.

I have tried it several times here at the shop. People tend to turn their nose up at it because of the whole “buttermilk” title. It’s funny because this one guy came into the shop and I offered him a piece of buttermilk pie and he looked at me like I was an alien.

I then turned to him and said, how about a piece of egg custard pie and he was like sure, that sounds great! It drives me crazy how people turn their nose up at things because of the name.

Buttermilk is fabulous! There is just no other way to put it. I love to cook with it. It just amazes me at how many different ways you can use it!

Here is a simple recipe for buttermilk pie: Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees. You will need 3 eggs, 1 cup of sugar, 2 tablespoons flour (plus a little for dusting), half a cup of butter (melted), 1 cup buttermilk, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell.

While the oven is pre-heating you will need to start beating the eggs, slowly add the sugar and flour. Then add melted butter and mix. Add buttermilk and vanilla and mix well. Dust the unbaked pie shell with a little bit of flour.

Pour batter into the pie shell, and then sprinkle a little more flour on top of the pie. Place the pie in the oven for about one hour, or until the custard is set. Whenever I’m baking a cake or pie I like to use eggs that are at room temperature. This will help the cake or pie rise better.

I love this pie! It has to be one of my favorites.

You can whip up some homemade whipped cream to add an extra zing to it. The next time you crank up that oven, try this pie, I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Until next time, have a good day today and a better day tomorrow.

Jennifer Whaley is the owner and chef at Lemon Grass on Highway 80.