Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Grease
a large cast-iron skillet and place in the oven to heat while mixing the batter.
In a large bowl, mix the cornmeal, flour, sugar
, baking powder, salt, baking soda
, and a few generous grinds of black pepper.
In a separate bowl, whisk
the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter together until combined. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined (it's okay if it's a little lumpy). Pour the batter
into the hot cast-iron skillet and bake until the top is golden brown, about 25 minutes.
Immediately remove the cornbread from the skillet and allow to cool. The cornbread can be made up to 2 days in advance when using for the dressing. Store until needed, then crumble and follow instructions for the dressing.
If enjoying the cornbread immediately (not for the dressing recipe), remove the cornbread from the oven, invert it onto a large plate, and then flip it once more so it is right side up. Slice into wedges and serve warm with lots of butter.