Johnnycake Bread

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Johnnycakes are thought to be the original pancakes. Last year, I made Johnnycakes for my son to bring on a field trip to a historic one-room schoolhouse, wrapped in his old-fashioned lunch basket with a potato! (his request… I am sure something else was in there but it was not as memorable!) They are delicious cornmeal pancakes served with butter and honey. I love cornmeal pancakes served with syrup as well.

When I read about this bread version of Johnnycakes from Bon Appetit on First Look then Cook, I wanted to make it right away. Her description was wonderful, and we ate it as suggested- warm with butter. My kids and I loved it! A great change of pace for breakfast. It would also be a delicious snack with a cup of tea or a glass of milk.

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil, plus more for pans (cooking spray can be substituted for the pans)
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup cornmeal
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk (I used half and half)
  • ¼ cup molasses (light molasses could also be used, or 2 T molasses and 2 T honey)
  • 1-2 tablespoons maple sugar or turbinado sugar
  1. Heat oven to 325°. Lightly oil (I used cooking spray) three 5×2½” loaf pans (or one 8½x4½” loaf pan).
  2. Whisk flour, cornmeal, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add eggs, milk, molasses, and ¼ cup oil, and whisk to incorporate.
  4. Divide equally between pans. Sprinkle with sugar.
  5. Bake breads until golden and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 minutes for small loaves (on convection) (or approximately 50–55 minutes for one large loaf). Transfer pans to a wire rack and let cool 10 minutes before turning out.
  6. Serve warm out of the oven, or toasted if at room temperature, with butter.

Do Ahead: Breads can be made 1 day ahead. Store wrapped tightly at room temperature.

One Year Ago:

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About Josette@thebrookcook

I live in Stony Brook, New York on Long Island. I love garlic and baking. My hobby (and love) is to try new recipes. My favorite recipe resources include The New York Times, Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Living. Enjoy!

26 responses to “Johnnycake Bread

  1. I’ve never had Johnnycakes! Can you believe that? Terrible, I know. But anything served warm with butter and honey is right up my alley! Your bread version of this looks so tasty, Josette!

    • I would describe this more as a molasses-cornbread actually. Johnnycakes (which I want to make again now!) are small pancakes made with cornmeal cooked in and topped with butter. This recipe probably has molasses in lieu of a honey topping. I am a syrup fan myself! 🙂 This bread was great!

  2. Hadn’t heard of Johnnycakes! Thanks, Josette, These little guys look lovely 🙂

  3. What a lovely and unusual recipe – thanks for sharing – I think they would be rather nice with a bit of fruit compote too – yum!!

  4. Love Johhnycakes…but in a bread? Genius 🙂 Thanks for sharing the recipe Josette!

  5. I’ve never had Johnnycakes either, they look delicious! 🙂

  6. I’ve never heard of johnnycakes! But I’m glad I have now! These look delicious!

  7. I love the idea of them in loaf form. Pinning this for sure.

  8. These cakes look lovely- bet the molasses flavour was amazing!

  9. These are totally new to me. I would love to try this!

  10. Wow, molasses in cornmeal,- I can’t wait to try this!

  11. You got me really curious 🙂 It looks like a loaf but tastes like pancake??? Gotta try it this afternoon!

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