RECIPE: Pip Sumbak’s pancetta and lard upside-down cornbread

 In Recipes

“This cornbread was inspired by my most recent food/travel memory,” says Pip Sumbak of @pipsplate, “it was March 2020 in New Orleans, just before the world changed. I ate so well on that trip but a particular brunch dish of steaming hot corn bread, maple butter and crispy bacon stayed with me. This is my one pan, fancy version.”

200g sliced Salumi Australia pancetta (enough to cover the base and side of pan – i use a 25cm cast iron skillet)
1 tsp salumi lard
250g corn meal
120g flour (substitute gluten free flour)
2 heaped tsp baking powder
1 heaped tsp salt
Good pinch pepper
1 tbsp melted salumi lard
600ml buttermilk
1 cup sweet corn kernels (fresh or canned)
1 cup  spring onion thinly sliced
1 cup Parmesan or pecorino
3 eggs


  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk the buttermilk, eggs, and melted lard. Then stir through the remaining wet ingredients.
  4. Layer your pan with the pancetta (remember you’ll turn this upside down once cooked).
  5. Place the pan in the oven for 10 minutes or until your pancetta is just crispy and fat is rendered.
  6. While this is happening, whisk your wet ingredients with your dry ingredients to create a smooth batter. 
  7. Pour the batter evenly over the pancetta and pop back in the oven. Bake until a skewer inserted into the middle of the bread comes out clean and the sides are nice and crispy, which will take approximately 20-30mins.
  8. After you’ve removed from the oven let rest for 10 minutes. Then invert onto a serving pate, drizzle with a good maple syrup and serve with more butter, cheese, or as is.