When you haven’t got a lot of time, and you want to bake something that you know is going to work, then I can’t recommend muffins highly enough. And these ones have so much going for them: perfect snack size, hidden vegies, not too much sugar, easy to adapt to dairy-free, they can be frozen… They are also toddler-friendly, according to my 2-year-old daughter, who has figured out how to get them down from the kitchen bench!
I make them in a small muffin/standard cupcake size tray, but you could make them as giant Texas-style muffins if you wanted – just increase the cooking time a bit. I also like to use individual silicon liners because they’re so easy to turn out, which is particularly good if you want to freeze the muffins.
125g butter, melted
1 cup milk
1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 cup finely grated zucchini
2 1/2 cups self-raising flour
1/2 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice
Whisk the butter, eggs, milk, sugar and chia seeds together in a small bowl. In a larger bowl combine the flour, flaxseed, baking powder and allspice. Add the zucchini and toss lightly to coat. Make a well in the centre and pour in the butter mixture. Mix briefly until just combined – remember that muffins work best when worked quickly and the mixture isn’t beaten too much. Spoon into muffin tins and bake in a preheated 180C oven for about 20-25 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
If you want to make these dairy free you could switch the butter for coconut oil and the milk for coconut milk. Another tasty thing to do would be to add 1/2 cup sultanas or chopped walnuts to the mix!
Last week I had an idea for cherry ripe muffins, so this weekend I was compelled to make them. I need to have these kind of ideas more often, because the resulting muffins are AMAZING! Rich and chocolatey, with bursts of cherry pieces and coconut, they taste just like their namesake chocolate bars. Even the batter tasted incredible.
1 2/3 cups self raising flour
½ cup caster sugar
1/3 cup desiccated coconut
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup glace cherries, halved
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup coconut milk
90g butter, melted
¼ cup cherry liqueur
Preheat oven to 180C, line or grease a 6-hole texas muffin pan. Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl, stir in chocolate chips and cherries. Stir in remaining ingredients and divide the mixture among the pan holes. Bake for 30 minutes, stand in trays for 5 minutes before turning on to a wire rack to cool.
My fiancé doesn’t bake much, but when he does, he makes these deliciously easy little bites of savoury cheesy goodness.
Here he is to tell you how to do it:
I got this recipe off one of my friends, it was hand written in a letter, I suspect the recipe was knowingly simple as I have meagre baking skills. (I can heat up pies like a pro though)
The things you will need are listed below. I suggest you purchase all of them and put them in a heap in front of you before you start baking as nothing sucks more than having to run down the shops for some cheese halfway through making cheese muffins.
2 cups grated cheese
1 ½ self-raising flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
a healthy shake of smoky paprika
1 cup milk
Mix all the dry ingredients, and the grated cheese, together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl whisk the egg and the milk. Pour the egg and milk into the dry ingredients and stir until combined. Spoon mixture into greased mini muffin trays, and bake at 210C for about 10-15 minutes. Cool in tins for 5 minutes, then turn on to a wire rack.
Woah ok that was easy! Here’s an action shot of me spooning the sticky stuff in the muffin pan.
- The cheese needs to be tasty cheese, or pizza cheese is also good. The best cheese however is called pizza plus and it’s the best cheese because it’s 3 kinds of cheese; tasty, mozzarella, and parmesan, also known as the ‘Cheese Triarch’ (it’s not really).
- If you have any leftover cheese, sprinkle a little on top of each muffin before putting them in the oven (let’s face it we all have leftover cheese)
- You can make them hammy by adding a good big handful of diced ham or bacon bits (adding bacon bits will make them more bacony than hammy)
- If you want to get really fancy you can also add fresh chopped herbs, if you want to get really really fancy you could add in some myrrh and frankincense (don’t do this).
Everyone loves them, even babies!! Best served warm straight out of the oven, but at room temperature is also fine.
Luke had never had muffins before – he’s now a huge fan!
It was the show day holiday here in Brisbane today. A gorgeous sunny winter Wednesday, and I didn’t go to the show, but I did go to a picnic in the park this afternoon. So I made muffins! Perfect picnic food – easy to prepare, easy to take with you, easy to share. These are cranberry spice muffins, and they are good! (I may have had to taste test one when they came out of the oven, just to make sure)
3 cups self-raising flour
2 teaspoons mixed spice
1/2 cup caster sugar
125g butter, chopped
1 cup milk
1 cup dried fruit (I used cranberries, but you could use anything)
Sift flour, spice and sugar into a large bowl, and rub in the butter (I hate this part because I’m impatient, so if you really don’t want to do it then you could use a food processor for this step). Stir in the fruit, milk and eggs and mix until just combined. Divide mixture amongst a lined 6-hole texas style muffin pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 180C, cool on a wire rack.
I was a bit worried to start with because the mix seemed really thick, and I thought the muffins might turn out too dry, but they were perfect! Massive though, you could probably do regular sized muffins and bake them for 20 minutes instead.