Tomato, Goat Cheese, and Basil Cornbread

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Photograph courtesy of Laura C. Martin, "Green Market Baking Book"

From Green Market Baking Book by Laura C. Martin

Martin suggests serving this pretty bread with a summer salad. Just before serving, cut each loaf into 1/2-inch slices, place on a cookie sheet, and toast in a preheated, 350-degree oven. Serve hot.

Ingredients
6 tablespoons butter
4 small green onions, white parts only, chopped
2 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, plus 4 to 6 whole basil leaves
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1 cup stone-ground cornmeal
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups milk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
2 plum tomatoes

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease 4 small loaf pans with olive oil. In a saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the green onions and cook until soft. Add the chopped basil and turn off the heat.

2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs and milk with the onion mixture. Make a well in the dry ingredients and add the egg mixture, stirring untl just blended. Do not overmix.

3. Divide half the batter among the 4 loaf pans. Chop the tomatoes into small chunks. Place 1 tablespoon of chopped tomatoes lengthwise down the center of the batter in each pan. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of goat cheese on top of the tomatoes. Top with 1 or 2 whole basil leaves. Divide the remaining batter among the 4 pans.

4. Bake for about 20 minutes, until golden brown. Remove the bread from the pans and cool on a wire rack.

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