I got some self-rising stone ground cornmeal from The Old Mill in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and baked these corn sticks in my cast iron pans. You don't use any flour in this recipe, only cornmeal. It makes them dense and hearty, but very tasty, and the perfect accompaniment to stews or beans.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Brush the cornstick pans with melted butter, oil, or shortening and preheat them in the oven.
Combine the cornmeal, sugar, melted butter, egg, and enough buttermilk to make a thick batter. It should be about the consistency of cake batter. If it's too thin, add a few tablespoons of the cornmeal. If too thick, add a little more buttermilk.
Spoon batter into the hot cornstick pans. Return pans to oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove and let cool in pans about 5 minutes.
Then using a table knife, run it around the edges to help remove the cornsticks from the pans. Serve hot with butter and sorghum or maple syrup if desired.