The Chiropractor and Jesus + Skillet Cornbread Recipe

Adjusting. Flexibility. Adapting. These are all words that swirl around in our line of work. People might think we’re good at them, because we’ve all heard, “I could never do what you’re doing!”

Of course they could, if God asked them to. Or, at least, we hope they would be obedient.

I may be obedient in this area, but is it easy? No way.

When I first think of adjusting, I immediately have some negative thoughts. Grieving what I just left. Diving into so much unknown. Being forced to give up my reins of control in a new circumstance. Complaining. Grieving or worrying about what is to come.

But when I take a step back, I see God delighting in our adjustments. He gives us these times of grieving, trials, and discomfort in order to bring us back to him. Sole focus on him. What other purpose do we have? Everything we do and say should point back to this single command.

Can I draw an analogy to chiropractic adjustments? (Bare with me, I’m desperately missing the chiropractor I met at fellowship who adjusted me right there on the table…at fellowship.) Much like the bones in our bodies need to repeatedly be adjusted to remember where they are supposed to be, our hearts and minds need to continually be adjusted back to focus on the Father.

This week is the start of a new semester in our household. New English classes for the hubby, and I’m teaching my 1st grader and pre-schooler. It’s been a bit of a rocky start.

Due to some unforeseen circumstances (aren’t they always?!), hubby has to teach more classes. Harder classes. New-to-him classes. He also has other commitments to the team and within the community. Right now, it seems like a lot is piled in his lap.

How did he take it? Like Jesus would want him to. In stride. With grace and an eternal perspective. Maybe he complained in his head, but I never heard them.

Also due to these circumstances, I am now the only mama with young kids on our team. Yes, I’ve been spoiled with playmates for my kiddos the past few teams. I think I’m still in the grieving stage. (The only reason I know is because this virtually non-crier has tears ready to spill out several times a week!) It’s not easy for me to accept new plans, especially when they happen so suddenly.

How did I take it? You guessed it…see above. Grieving, angry, and a whole load of complaining. I know these feelings are valid, but there is a point when I need to deal with them. Deal with my prideful pity party. Re-focus on who He is and why we’re here.

I wish I could tell you I’m on the other side. Lesson learned. Check!

But I’m not.

I know God has me in this challenging place for now. I can either choose to continue to throw myself pity parties, or I can choose to accept his perfect grace and soak in what He wants me to learn here, now. It’s a moment-by-moment choice for me. What a great God I serve to never leave me alone one of those moments, no matter how many times I ignore him.

*****

Fall is upon us. In my mind, when Fall arrives, many kinds of soups should be made! Now, if only my kids would like soups. We’ll work on it. Until then, I’ll feed them this crunchy, savory cornbread!

I grew up with Jiffy cornbread muffins. I still have a deep love for them, and my dad sends me boxes with nearly every care package. But, recently, I’ve fallen in love with this recipe of savory cornbread! Maybe it’s the crunchy bottom and sides. Or maybe it’s just that it’s not sweet. I don’t know. It’s just plain delicious!

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Where I live, cornmeal as I know it is impossible to find. So, a tip from Market2Meal–mix corn flour and coarse cornmeal! I keep a pre-mixed tub on hand just for this cornbread!

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Do you know the trick for buttermilk? Add a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to a measuring cup, then fill up to the 1 cup line. Stir, then let sit for 5 minutes. Boom! Buttermilk.

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After adding the liquid to the dry, it’ll start bubbling! The magic has begun…

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Do you have shortening where you live? Honestly, it’s expensive in my country. But, I only use it in a handful of recipes, so I only have to buy it about twice a year! Worth it for me!

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The sizzle. That’s when you know you’ve done right.

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The sides and edges will still look completely uncooked, but don’t you worry! The crusty goodness has begun!

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My skillet can fit in my oven, but I always say a quick prayer that the metal rack doesn’t break during this bake.

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Crispy. Savory. So, so good.

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After this picture, I immediately ate the outer edges. Duh, crispy edges are the best.

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I like mine plain. Or with butter. Or honey. Or butter and honey.

Skillet Cornbread

Recipe from The Pioneer Woman

1 cup yellow cornmeal

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 cup buttermilk (See note above, under milk picture, for how to make your own.)

1/2 cup milk

1 egg

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup shortening

2 Tbsp shortening

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Combine cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Stir together.

Measure the buttermilk and milk in a measuring cup and add the egg. Stir together with a fork. Add the baking soda and stir.

Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir until combined.

In a small bowl, melt 1/4 shortening. Slowly add melted shortening to the batter, stirring until just combined. In an iron skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons shortening over medium heat. Pour the batter into the hot skillet. Spread to even out the surface. (Batter should sizzle.)

Cook on stove top for 1 minute, then bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.

**Fun fact, this was made in a cast iron skillet that one of the Velvet Ashes readers mailed to me! She saw a comment I had made over a year ago about always wanting one, and she graciously sent hers that she didn’t use anymore! Now that is what this community is about. 🙂

What are you adjusting to right now? How have you seen God meet you where you are? And, on a lighter note, sweet or savory cornbread?

13 Comments

  1. Emily September 13, 2015

    “Due to some unforeseen circumstances (aren’t they always?!)…” I feel like this could be the starting sentence for so many chapters of our overseas life. You also say you see God delighting in our adjustments – glad this is true because we have so many of them!

    I never think to make cornbread, but my family loves it when I do. Thanks for the reminder and the tip about buttermilk. I think your stirring spoon is a chopstick? I love you already. 🙂

    1. Ashley Felder September 14, 2015

      Indeed, the adjustments are too many to count. So glad we have Someone on our side! My family actually likes Jiffy better. Boo! I still make them eat this pretty often! And um, yes, I love stirring with a chopstick…somehow it just does a better job!! 🙂

  2. Patty Stallings September 14, 2015

    Ashley, I love your heart – tender to God’s work in you, growing in your understanding of His ways, authentic and humble in your communication with others.  How delighted He must be in your responsiveness to Him!

    1. Ashley Felder September 14, 2015

      Thank you, Patty. Again, with those full-of-grace words. I need to soak those in. 🙂

  3. M'Lynn September 14, 2015

    You’re so brave! I haven’t gotten up the nerve to put my cast iron skillet in my little oven because I’m so scared it will break the rack. This recipe looks worth the risk, though.

    And…I agree that oh-so painful times of adjustment are such good reminders of our constant need to focus on relationship with the Father!

    1. Ashley Felder September 14, 2015

      Does it fit? If it does, you should be ok! Do you have a Tomato? I had the smaller version of Tomato in our last home, and the skillet didn’t fit, so I’d bungee cord the door shut, then put a towel over the gaping hole. Ha! Anything to get me some skillet cornbread! Plus, if it does break, I’m sure you can get a replacement on Taobao. 😉

  4. Bethany J. September 14, 2015

    I’m facing a lot of adjustment this year as well. We had several personnel leave Mongolia for good and several more leave for a time, and it has been hard to readjust to their absences in my life. Our team leader and co-teacher left in June, and I have missed working with her now that school has started back up. I do like our new teammate because it’s hard not to like an Aussie, but he’s not a replacement for her. 🙂 I’m also adjusting to different expectations this year following a personal loss. Unforeseen circumstances happen, as you said, but I do find comfort in knowing that they are not unforeseen for Him. Thank you for sharing your heart!

    1. Ashley Felder September 14, 2015

      Thank you for sharing your adjustments, Bethany! Lifting you now, asking that the Father would draw you close, reminding you he never leaves your side.

  5. Grace L September 14, 2015

    Such fun to see the cast iron skillet in use. Oh my, that cornbread looks yummy!

    I pray for you, and all moms of toddlers and babies, that God will give you grace day by day for the many stresses and adjustments you must make.

    1. Ashley Felder September 15, 2015

      Grace, thank you again! It has definitely been put to good use. 🙂

  6. Phyllis September 14, 2015

    Corn flour and corn meal are different? Oh. I just make corn bread with corn flour. 🙂

    And I have a fun cast iron skillet story, too. I wanted one for a long time, but couldn’t justify the expense or weight. But then, when we were visiting my husband’s parents, we went for a walk around their neighbourhood. We found a cast-iron skillet sticking up out of someone’s trash can there! It looked like they had burned something badly and thrown it out, instead of cleaning up. My mother-in-law cleaned it and carefully reseasoned it for me. After that, we easily made room for the weight in our luggage.

    1. Elizabeth September 14, 2015

      That’s a funny story Phyllis! I’m glad you have your skillet now!

    2. Ashley Felder September 15, 2015

      Just their texture is different. I like adding the coarse cornmeal to give it a crunchier texture. 🙂 And, what a great story!! One man’s trash…. 🙂

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