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Spoon-Bread Muffins

January 2008

These muffins truly give the flavor of corn its due. They're not sweetened like corn bread (meaning like "Yankee" corn bread, says Peacock), and they have a very fine, almost custardy texture, from the extra-fine grind of the cornmeal (which makes them reminiscent of spoon bread). "Honey and soft butter play to the creamy, tangy flavor of the muffins particularly well," says Peacock.

Sugared Blackberries

January 2008

In the discussion of preserving fruit by canning versus freezing, why doesn't this technique ever come up? Peacock credits the late Edna Lewis for teaching him to mix mashed fruit with sugar for a sort of jam that he says keeps for a year when refrigerated. (We only tested up to one month, but so far, so good.) "It's a very old-fashioned method," he says. "The flavor is fresh and intense and delicious spooned onto hot buttered buttermilk biscuits or yeast rolls." Try it with raspberries or strawberries, too.
Think of the best sweet-potato pie you've ever eaten and then take away the crust so you can revel solely in its silky goodness. A bite of this pudding is full and round, with hits of chestnut and dried fruit.

Bourbon Pecan Tarts

January 2008

More nuts than filling and a seriously buttery crust make for a beguilingly sweet finish.

Boiled Coffee

January 2008

Boiling this strong coffee with eggshells clarifies it by helping the grounds to settle.
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