Chef John's Rustic Italian Corn Bread

Chef John's Rustic Italian Corn Bread

Chef John

"I was speaking with my mother, Pauline, last week, and she told me about a bread she used to eat at her grandmother's house. She said it was basic Italian bread, but had some cornmeal in it, and was one of her favorites. I love to play food detective, so I took her description and went to work. I believe this is pretty close to what she remembers, and even if it's a bit off, it was still delicious."
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Ingredients

4 h 30 m servings 226 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!
Original recipe yields 8 servings

Nutrition

  • Calories:
  • 226 kcal
  • 11%
  • Fat:
  • 5.3 g
  • 8%
  • Carbs:
  • 38.2g
  • 12%
  • Protein:
  • 6.2 g
  • 12%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 0 mg
  • 0%
  • Sodium:
  • 441 mg
  • 18%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

See full nutrition

Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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Directions

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  1. Stir warm water, 1/2 cup bread flour, yeast, and sugar together in a bowl. Let stand until the yeast softens and forms a creamy mixture, about 40 minutes.
  2. Mix 1/2 cup cornmeal, olive oil, and salt into yeast mixture. Gradually add bread flour to yeast mixture until a dough pulls together.
  3. Knead dough on a lightly floured work surface until smooth and elastic, 10 to 12 minutes. Place dough in a large, lightly-oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
  4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 14-inch wide rectangle. Roll dough, starting from the long-end, into a loaf, finishing seam-side down.
  5. Dust a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon cornmeal. Place loaf on baking sheet, cover with a dry towel, and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Place a shallow pan of water on the lower rack of the oven.
  7. Cut a 1/2-inch deep slash down the center of the loaf.
  8. Bake in preheated oven until the top is golden brown and the bottom of loaf sounds hollow when tapped, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Reviews

Read all reviews 7
  1. 8 Ratings

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Most helpful positive review

An easy bread to make. I kneaded the bread by hand and was surprised how easy it was to do. The bread was crusty on the outside and tender on the inside. My husband loved the bread with butter.

Most helpful critical review

I tried making this in my bread maker and it was an epic failure. I'm not going to blame the recipe. Apparently, what makes it work isn't compatible with my bread maker.

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An easy bread to make. I kneaded the bread by hand and was surprised how easy it was to do. The bread was crusty on the outside and tender on the inside. My husband loved the bread with butter.

I tried making this in my bread maker and it was an epic failure. I'm not going to blame the recipe. Apparently, what makes it work isn't compatible with my bread maker.

Well, That temp first. At 425 degrees, you better start checking it at 25 minutes. I checked it at 26 minutes, turned it over and thumped the bottom, and because the color was a dark brown, I...

I made this for Thanksgiving the night before. They were soft, moist and delicious. Perfectly dense, but light at the same time. I'll definitely be using this recipe for all of my italian bread ...

I would use less salt. This bread is tasty but didn't live up to my expectation as I thought the cornmeal flavor was lost.

Not have corn meal I used some corn flour instead. Still turned out very good. Bake time was a little too long but that may have been due to my variation.

Delicious! I loved! For me a bit salty, even with this small amount of salt recomended!

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