When I add mix-ins to cornbread, such as whole kernels of sweet corn or diced up peppers, I usually just stir them right into the cornbread batter in exactly the same way I would do if I were adding blueberries to a muffin batter. I’ve visited a few restaurants, however, that had stuffed cornbread on the menu. This type of cornbread usually comes in muffin-sized single servings and is filled with cheese or whole, spicy peppers – I’ve even had a cheese-stuffed peppers inside of cornbread before. I didn’t realize that this was a trend that was catching on, but it just might be the future of cornbread, since Williams Sonoma introduced a Stuffed Cornbread Pan. The pan looks like a muffin pan with square cavities, and inside of each one is a large spike. The spikes are designed to hold a heavy filling in place while the cornbread bakes, so a large piece of cheese (for instance) won’t sink down to the bottom of the pan and cause the cornbread to stick. The entire pan is nonstick, so if you let the cornbread cool for a few minutes, they should slide out easily with filling safely in place.
This pan is actually pretty versatile, since you can use it to bake individual coffee cakes or muffins as well as cornbreads. You don’t need to take advantage of the stuffing spike in the muffin cups every time you use the pan, but you will definitely make cornbread a little more exciting at barbecues this summer!