It’s time again to visit with our friends from Martha White and the Country Music Association! Speaking of that, did you see the list of the nominees for the CMA Awards? See the full list here. Be sure to catch the hilarious hosts, Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood, when the awards air LIVE on ABC on November 4th at 8/7 central. My pals Brandie from The Country Cook and Tina from Mommy’s Kitchen will be there live to give us all a behind the scenes look at the festivities. Then a few weeks later, Stephanie from Plain Chicken and I will be behind the scenes at the taping for the annual CMA Country Christmas. It’s going to be a blast!
And speaking of awards, you know no awards viewing party is complete without some great food – and boy do I have something delicious for you! When my cookbook launched the caterer at the release party made a variety of things from the book and filled the menu out with some of her own favorite recipes. One of the things she added were these amazing cornbread tarts that were topped with pulled pork. The sweet cornbread cookie was topped with smoky pulled pork and a delicious sauce. Everyone was raving about them! Since then, I’ve been toying with the idea of trying to recreate them and I think I’ve gotten pretty close. The amazing thing is how ridiculously easy these are! Only 4 ingredients! I stopped by my favorite local barbecue joint and grabbed a pound of pulled pork and some of their famous sauce and I had these puppies ready in no time. Let’s make some…
First we’re going to make the little tarts. Why do I call them tarts? Because that’s what the caterer called them and because Pulled Pork Cornbread Cookies sounds gross. You start with two packages of Martha White Sweet Yellow Cornbread and Muffin Mix. I’ve tried several different flavors, and the sweet yellow complements the pulled pork the best.
Pour that into a large bowl and then add 1 stick (1/2 cup) of softened butter. Now, you want this butter to be really soft, but not melted.
Mix that all together until you get a dough that looks like this. It takes some stirring and just when you think it won’t come together, it will. If it doesn’t, a few drops of water will help.
Scoop out 1 tablespoon of the dough and roll it into a ball. You have to work quickly at this because the cornmeal starts absorbing the moisture and it will get crumbly on you kinda quickly. But no worries, when that happens, just add a few drops of water to the bowl and mix it back up really good and proceed.
Place the balls of dough onto a baking sheet lining with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat – about 3 to 4 inches apart.
Then just smash the balls flat with the palm of your hand.
Bake in a 350° oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until they just start to brown. Cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes before transferring the tarts to a cooling rack to finish cooling. Once cooled, top with pulled pork and a drizzle of your favorite sauce and you’ve got an amazing appetizer or snack for your viewing party – or anytime, really!
Pulled Pork Cornbread Tarts
- 2 (7-ounce) packages Martha White Sweet Yellow Cornbread and Muffin Mix
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- 1 pound pulled pork
- Barbecue sauce
Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Combine the butter and cornbread mix in a large bowl. The butter should be very, very soft – almost melted. Stir until the mixture is moistened and dough-like. Working quickly, scoop a tablespoon of dough into your hands and roll it into a ball. Place the ball on the parchment paper and press it flat with the palm of your hand. Continue until all the dough has been used. It should take take two or three pans, so have them ready if you can. If the dough get too crumbly add a few drops of water and mix well to get it to stick together better. The longer the dough sits, the more crumbly it will become as the cornmeal absorbs the liquid.
Bake for 10 to 12 minute or until just starting to brown on the edges. Cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes before transferring the tarts to a cooling rack with a spatula to cool completely.
Once cool, top the tarts with a small scoop of pulled pork and drizzle with your favorite barbecue sauce.