Cast-Iron Cornbread

Cast-Iron Cornbread

You know how sometimes you catch a whiff of something and it immediately makes a thought or feeling pop into your head?

Like the smell of roast beef and tomatoes makes me think of my grandma's.  She often cooks with those ingredients, and it always takes me back through all the years of going to her house for dinner.  Feeding housefulls of people requires the right ingredients.  These ingredients always kept her family (and finicky-eater grandchildren) happy.

The smell of damp wood - yeah, not all food smells - instantly reminds me of being 6 or 7 and playing Lava Monsters in my great-grandpa's basement.  Yes, Lava Monsters.  Haven't you played that?  My sister and cousin and I would hop from chair to rug to stool around the room trying not to touch the cement floor "lava" while one of us, the monster, tried to get the others.  It wasn't the most graceful of games.  Bruises sometimes happened.  But ultimately, the thrill of avoiding (or being) a lava monster was worth it.

And the smell of cornbread and chili - oh, that delightfully dreamy aroma -  reminds me of a cozy home in winter, surrounded by my family.  

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