Cornbread + Biscuits

Austin

The moist cornbread muffins at Dot’s Place walk the line between sweet and unsweet, so as not to offend patriots on either side of the great cornbread divide. Just remember the restaurant is serving to-go only these days. At Threadgill’s, the unsweet cornbread muffins have a bit of texture and a jalapeño kick that sneaks up on you; moist but delicate, they crumble in your hands as you apply butter. To use comedian Jerry Clower’s memorable terminology, Hoover’s Cooking serves no “whomp” (i.e., canned) biscuits. The finely textured homemade sweet-potato biscuits here are cinnamony and unforgettable (buttermilk biscuits are offered at breakfast only).

Dallas

Count on the doting servers who dish up food at South Dallas Café to call you “baby” in the most maternal way as they ask you to choose between the slightly sweet, moist, hot-water corn pones or the sweet, buttery, yellow corn muffins; smile big and ask for both. At Celebration, the quick, experienced staff, sporting their hallmark leather aprons and carrying order books in their jeans pockets, are accustomed to bringing basket after basket of bread. That’s because nobody can get enough of those flat, buttery pieces of cornbread filled with chopped green chiles and corn kernels. Seated at the Mecca in what feels like the inside of a large, seventy-year-old junk closet, you’ll find your focus riveted to the basket of cornbread as you await your order. Well-nigh fluffy in texture, these muffins are admirably light on both grease and sugar.

Fort Worth

From the moment you place an order at the counter at Drew’s Place, your foot won’t stop tapping until a server brings your tray of food. Why? Because you’re so anxious to get those warm, crisp-edged cornbread muffins, with just enough grease to be flavorful. Customers are afforded two ways to throw low-carb diets to the wind at the Paris Coffee Shop: a basket of the white- cornmeal muffins, perfectly crunchy on the edges but moist and not too sweet inside, or an order of the big, golden-brown baking-powder-and-yeast biscuits measuring nearly two inches thick.

Houston

The flaky, falling-apart cornbread at Pearl’s Soul Food Café has a texture almost like cake and mixes wonderfully with the pungent pot likker from the greens. At Triple A, which favors traditional orange Naugahyde chairs, the moist, grainy cornbread tastes cornier than most.

Lubbock

Anzley’s Family Dining, in an unadorned stand-alone building in northeast Lubbock, should get an award for its cornbread. Hand-cut into squares, it’s slightly browned on the bottom, crumbly, and a little bit sweet—no added butter needed. At the Ranch House, which is popular with blue-collar workers downtown, no one thinks twice if you crumble your

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