Gather all your ingredients and preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) for a glass baking dish, or 425°F (220°C) for a metal pan.
In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the dry ingredients.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg well and add the yogurt, milk, and ghee (or melted butter).
Add in the corn, bell pepper, scallions, and chilies, if using.
Add the wet ingredients into the dry mix and mix together just until combined. Be careful not to overmix the batter; you don’t want to activate the gluten or the bread will not be as tender. You will have a thick batter.
Pour into a prepared baking pan and bake until the edges are browned and a toothpick comes out clean. Start checking at the 18-minute mark and it may take up to 25 minutes.
Allow the cornbread to cool for 20 to 30 minutes before servings. This cornbread will stay moist for 2 days. If you want to keep it longer, wrap it tightly and freeze for up to two months.
The cornmeal to use: Most cornbread recipes call for medium grind yellow cornmeal. Fine or coarse cornmeal works as well but avoid corn flour or cornstarch. For more details review the description of ground corn in the post above.
Dry chilies: At the minimum, mix in a half teaspoon of ground Kashmiri red chili ancho or chipotle powders. Your favorite chili powder will also work, though if using cayenne, halve the amount unless you want some heat.
Fresh chilies: Besides the bell pepper, add some minced green chilies: small green Indian chilies, jalapeños, Serrano, or Fresno chilies. You can remove the seeds and white membrane for less heat.
Pan sizes that work for spicy cornbread:
This recipe was formulated for either an 8-inch or 9-inch square or round pan, with the larger pan producing a slightly thinner cornbread.
Use the same size cast iron skillet. Heat the pan in your oven while it is preheating to 400°F (200°C). When ready to bake, carefully remove the hot skillet from the oven, melt 1 tablespoon of butter in the pan, then pour in the cornbread batter. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
Even an 8 x 4 loaf pan will work.
Muffins: You will have approximately 3 1/2 cups of batter which will make 12 regular-sized muffins. Pour the batter into greased or lined cupcake pans, filling about them 2/3 full. Bake at 425°F (220°C) for 14-18 minutes.