Tag Archives: muffins

Muffin Mondays : Hazelnut & Cherry Jam Muffins

5 Mar

I missed Muffin Mondays so many weeks in a row. I have to admit that I did miss baking muffins.

What do I miss about it?

Well, making muffins was not just about baking muffins. It was the whole process, the journey of waking up early on a Saturday morning while the house is still sound asleep, tip toeing to the kitchen and looking at my Money plant that is growing so well. The the leaves are large and dark green, spreading themselves to form a sort of shade over the sink. I see new tendrils wrapping themselves around the older thicker stems. It is such a joy. Then I take a deep breath and look at my recipe book. Yes I have a recipe book which has sheaves of papers, cuttings, scraps of recipes, scribbles and food quotes. I rummage through them and find the latest recipe that An has sent us all. I had written it down quickly the night before so that I could start making the muffins, unhindered. I preheat the oven with a light of a matchstick and warm my hands. Then I grease my new heart-shaped silicon muffin moulds and suddenly just looking at them takes me back in time. I am reminded of my honeymoon, the day that I got married, the day Mimi was born, the day I resigned from my job, the day I walked off from office and took a plane to see my hubby in the UK and never returned for the next 1 year, the day when I fell terribly sick when my hubby was away and there was nobody to buy me medicines, the day when Mimi walked for the first time, the nights when I had to rock a 2 month old Mimi to sleep, falling asleep in the process.

Memories keep tumbling over each other, building blocks and then falling again. They race against each other for my time to reminiscence them in detail. I shake the unpleasant ones off and dwell on the nicer ones. The ones that make me smile as I mix the batter for my muffins. The roasted hazelnut reminds me of the smoky nights in Delhi when my hubby and I were still dating and he would drop me home. We would linger around at the door of my paying guest apartment wondering what we should do. To steal a kiss or a peck when nobody was looking and then I rush indoors while he lingered some more at the door before finally saying good-bye until we met again the following day.

The batter, now looked smooth and shiny with the hazelnut browned bits peeping out. I dollop a spoonful in the cups and then add a spoonful of cherry jam and then cover it all up another dollop of the batter.

I woke up from my stupor and realized I had spent a lot of time reminiscing and I need to prep everything by the time my family woke up. Breakfast had to be laid, tea had to be brewed, bread had to be toasted and fruits had to be washed. Yet again, I fell back into thinking about a time when we had no worries, my hubby and I would take off as soon as we woke up for a car ride across the city, right to the opposite end of the city to have a sumptuous breakfast at Chandni chowk in Delhi. Alas, such spontaneity I miss sometimes but life has given me so many moments to treasure and make up for the ones that I miss.

Now for the Recipe, I halved the recipe and got 7 muffins. But when I took the first bite, I regretted halving the recipe. It was a good, good muffin to have around the house for a mid day snack or a late night binge. The original recipe called for plum jam but I had cherry and fig preserves and used them instead. My toddler who is an ardent Jam hater ate around the jam and spat the fruit preserves out. So I think I can declare these muffins a hit, I suppose. I am jotting down the recipe with its original proportions.

The Recipe for Hazelnut – Cherry Jam Muffins

From Women’s Weekly

Ingredients

90 grams butter, melted

21/2 cups (375 grams) self raising flour

1/2 cup (55 grams) hazelnut meal ( I roasted hazelnuts and then ground them using mortal and pestle. They weren’t very fine and that gave the muffins a very nibble worthy texture)

2/3 cup (150 grams) caster sugar

1 egg, beaten lightly

1 cup (250 ml) milk

1/2 cup (160 grams) plum jam ( I used cherry jam and fig jam)

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 200C/gas mark 6/400F

2. Grease a 12 hole muffin pan or line with muffin liners

3. In a large bowl, combine butter, flour, hazelnut meal, sugar, egg and milk.

4. Spoon half of the muffin mixture into the prepared pan and make a well in each muffin, spoon in rounded teaspoons of jam and top with remaing muffin mixture

5. Bake for 18-20 minutes


So you see, muffin making means all this to me; early mornings, tantalizing aroma of muffins baking and memory-walking. Like I mentioned before, it is a process and I enjoy every single step. But this time, I took it a step further and while my muffins were baking and turning into golden domes, I hurriedly walked to my cupboard and got my photo album out. I flipped through as many photos I could in those 20 minutes before I got my golden cups of hazelnut-cherry deliciousness out. I scattered the photos all over the table as I took my first bite and savoured the freshly baked muffin. Then the memories started to rearrange themselves keeping in order with the photographs that I had lined up. My Saturday morning was spent nibbling on this perky, full of flavour and jam-filled gorgeousness of a muffin. Every muffin baking adventure has had me going back and forth in time and that is why I enjoy it so much. The spell was broken when my toddler walked into the kitchen and promptly climbed my lap. We shuffled through the photos together, one by one and she was so happy to recognize every face in each photograph.

If you want to experience a wonderful weekend like I did, then you need to get in touch with Anuradha because Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week

Muffin Mondays : Oreo Muffins

2 Jan

Happy New Year, you guys!!

How did your New Year celebrations go?  Mine was absolutely super. My daughter danced and tottered around the dance floor until 2 am and I watched her all the time. It was the best feeling ever.

It’s the morning after, you know… well not the kind you all want to hear about but the morning after where I am still reeling from the after effects of partying too hard. My legs ache from those heels, my head feels a little heavy and all I want to do is pull a comforter over my head and sleep the entire day. But I cannot,  because I believe that whatever I do on the 1st of New Year, I would be doing it all through out the year.  So I did all the wonderful things that mean so much to me because I want to do them all around the year and much more.

1. Video chatted on Skype with my parents and listened to my father’s New Year advice in perfect silence.

2. Lot of cuddling with hubby and Mimi.

3. Spoke to all my best friends.

4. Had my favourite Teriyaki noodle soup ( love that stuff)

5. Lazed around and read Ruth Reichl’s memoir about being a Restaurant Critic called ” Garlic and Sapphires” . Hilarious stuff.

6. Wrote a bit

7. Took photographs with my wonderfully talented  friend, Namit.

8. Made Oreo Muffins!!!!

Shucks!! I should have gone shopping too!

How awesome can a list get? I mean it has drama, action, and so much romance in it. Perfect! Just the way I wanted it to be without planning too much.

Now here we are back with the last of the Holiday Muffin series and I am so excited to usher in the New Year with some scrumptious Oreo Muffins. When you think oreos and then Muffins, whats not to like!

Only change I made was I halved the recipe since I already had some candied rose petal and chocolate cake I had made on New Year’s eve. Though I understand that there cannot be anything like too much cake, halving it ensured I had more Oreos left to dunk  into my milk  at breakfast. *laughs her evil laugh*. I am jotting down the recipe here with its original proportions.

Recipe for Oreo Muffins

Source: Food.com

Ingredients

1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup milk

1/3 cup sour cream

1 egg

1/4 cup margarine

20 Oreo cookies

Preparation

1. In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt, set aside

2. In small bowl, combine milk, sour cream, and egg

3. Stir the egg mixture in to the flour mixture with margarine until just blended

4. Gently stir in the cookies

5. Spoon batter greased  muffin pan cups.

6. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

7. Remove from pan, cool on wire rack.

8. Serve warm or cold.

These muffins looked wonderful with little specks of Oreo cookies that I crushed into the batter. I used a few to chop them into quarters to embellish the muffins. They looked quite royal, methinks. I had some chocolate ganache in my refrigerator from my Black Forest Cake preparation which I used to frost the Oreo Muffins. They were simply decadent and the best possible muffins to sign off such a wonderful series of Holiday Muffins.

I have to thank Anuradha for letting me participate as it has helped me gain a good number of gorgeous muffin recipes and make acquaintance with such splendidly talented fellow bakers.

My friend Namit, whom I have been urging for ages to start his photography blog, has helped me click these muffin pictures. Thanks so much, Namit.

In other news, my Black forest cake photo was accepted by Tastespotting and that makes me so happy that I had to share the news here.

Here’s wishing each one of you a wonderful, sweet start to this New Year.

Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week.

Muffin Mondays: Rocky Road Muffins

21 Nov

Yes, I am back at it again. I missed baking muffins for 4 whole weeks and it was terrible. My blues did not leave me. Okay, I may be exaggerating a bit here. But I did miss baking with these maniac muffin bakers who brighten up my Monday. This time, we were in for a choco – treat that sounded decadent and fun. Rocky Road Muffins sounded so much fun that I had a questionnaire ( a verbal one, ofcourse) circulated among my family and friends, asking what came into their mind when they thought of a rocky roads.

Replies ranged from,

” Rocks!” ( ofcourse, why else would you call it Rocky Road )

” Stones and boulders”, (ookay)

” Trucks and Heavy vehicles”, “Iguanas and reptiles”  ( Hey wait! I think there has been some misunderstanding here. I did not tell them we were talking muffins !)

After the questionnaire was rectified, the replies were a lot saner.

“Huge Choco chunks” ( Tick mark)

“Maltesers” ( Interesting. Tick mark, again.)

“Marshmallows “( Tick Mark)

“Cashews and Hazelnuts” ( Now we are talking . Tick Mark)

Then I had to stop them there as I feared there would be more rocks and rock -like things than flour and other stuff that constitutes a muffin.

Rocky Road Muffins were a breeze to make but somehow were a bit dry for some reason. Another  thing I should have been careful of was to remind myself that the recipe called for self raising and I should have been a little conservative in filling up all those muffin cases to the brim. They seemed like they were ready to explode and which they did ( in a very subtle way) by bubbling out into a gooey mess in the oven. It broke my heart since I almost feared that I wouldn’t have any report aka muffins to share at the end of the Survey exercise. Muffins were alright but weren’t the best that my baking days have seen.  I feel responsible somehow about how they turned out but cannot really put a finger on what  went wrong since I followed the recipe precisely.

Thank you An, for sharing this muffin recipe with us. It feels terrific baking with you guys, as always.

Recipe for Rocky Road Muffins

From Susannah Blake’s Muffin Magic

Ingredients

2 cups (300grams) self raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

75 grams milk chocolate chopped ( Handful of maltesers)

1/2 cup walnuts  ( I used cashews and hazelnuts instead)

60 grams mini marshmallows or you can just chop large ones into small pieces

2/3 cup (150 grams) soft brown sugar

3/4 cup (200 ml) milk

2 eggs

75 grams butter

Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 400F. Grease or line a 12 hole muffin pan.

2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cocoa powder and marshmallows. Set aside.

3. Reserve about 1/3 of the chocolate chunks and walnuts and add the rest to the flour mixture.

4. In a separate bowl or jug; combine sugar, milk, eggs and butter.

5. Stir the egg mixture into the dry ingredients just until combined.

6. Spoon dollops into muffin cases and sprinkle chocolate and nuts on top. Press them gently into the batter

7. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

8. Cool for 5 minutes and transfer to wire rack

So on that chocolate filled note and until another wonderful Monday, wish you all a chirpy week ahead.

Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week.

Muffin Monday : Jam Filled Muffins

19 Sep

Can you imagine looking forward to Mondays?

I do. There are few reasons :-

1. In this part of the world (Bahrain), the working week starts on a SUNDAY.  Incredible isn’t it? So it is all about ‘SULLEN SUNDAYS’ and Monday means  I am a little closer to the weekend ( which are FRIDAY and SATURDAY).

2. I am a stay-at-home mum and I am on duty 24X7 looking after my daughter. I never get an off. So Sundays or Mondays or Tuesdays or any day don’t really matter to me.  I enjoy what I do which is spend time with my daughter and my days just fly and meld into each other. There are days when I have no clue about the day or the date. Time flies when you are having fun, they say. They speak the truth.

3. The biggest reason of them all – it’s that day when all the Muffin Monday posts come up!!

This Monday, Anuradha of BakerStreet invited us to bake Jam filled Muffins which are simple to put together and kid friendly. Oozing jam and soft muffins are such a great match. The recipe is from allrecipes.com

Recipe for Jam Filled Muffins

 Ingredients

1 and 3/4 cups Flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup milk

1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted

2 eggs

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1/2 cup jam  ( I used peach jam)

Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 400F

2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

3. In another bowl, lightly beat eggs, milk, butter and lemon rind.

4. Pour into the dry ingredients and the stir until moistened.

5. Spoon half batter, make a well, add jam, spoon the remaining batter and bake in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until the top is golden.

I followed the recipe as it was given and added jam of my choice, which was a very sweet peach jam. I used it sparingly as it was quite sweet. But after baking, I wished I hadn’t been that stingy. Anyhow, that would my big note for the next time, since this was the first time I was filling something within a batter and baking.

Taking photos was fun as I had my daughter trying to thwart every single attempt of mine to get a good shot. After more than 60-70 odd clicks I managed to get a few. She was really enjoying eating the lemon rind off the spoon and licking the jam side by side.  She also had a jolly time imitating me clicking photographs.

Mimi, my daughter goes to a playschool now. So I have two hours to myself to indulge on some jam filled muffins and a hot cup of black coffee.

So happy Monday, everybody. Hope the week flies by and you are able to accomplish everything that you set your heart on.

Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week.    

Muffin Monday : Granola Muffins

12 Sep

I have been following Anuradha’s blog for some time now. Each Monday, she rounded up a ritual of Monday Muffins which I found fascinating. Every Monday all the food bloggers around the world participated in this scrumptious event. I waited for the round up eagerly and drooled over the delicious muffin pictures on her blog. I cannot think of any other way to beat  Monday blues away.

This is the first time I am participating in this event and I am excited. This is my first attempt at making muffins. I shirked from participating before as I did not have muffin moulds. But Anuradha was more than willing to overlook this and here is my post for the Muffin Monday.

This time Anuradha wanted us to make the super healthy Granola Muffins. They make such a fantastic snack to munch on anytime. I even sent them in Mimi’s lunch box. Her teacher seemed happy today as she had finished a muffin very quickly unlike other days when she doesn’t seem interested in eating. So this is not the last time I would be making these muffins.

I have on me a box of pumpkin flavoured organic granola which is simply out of this world. Each morning I wake up with anticipation to dig into a bowl of yogurt laced with honey and some pumpkin granola. I used the same to make these muffins and they tasted spectacular.  With no butter or sugar it is a guilt free indulgence. Thank you Anuradha for sharing this recipe and am glad to be a part of this Muffin Mania.

Recipe for Granola Muffins

Ingredients

1 cup granola
1/2 cup low-fat milk
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large or extra large eggs
1/4 cup mild honey, such as clover
1/2 cup buttermilk or plain low-fat yogurt
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF with a rack in the middle. Grease 12 muffin cups.

2. In a bowl combine the granola and milk in a bowl and let sit for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, cover the raisins with hot water and soak for 15 minutes. Drain and dry on paper towels.

3. Sift together whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

4. In medium bowl, beat together the eggs, honey, buttermilk or yogurt, canola oil and vanilla. Quickly whisk in the flour, then fold in the granola and raisins. Combine well

5. Spoon into muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 full.

6. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then unmold and cool on a rack.

Notes : I used a pumpkin flavoured organic granola and also topped the muffin with more granola for the crunch

I used sunflower oil instead of canola

Used cupcake moulds but the time it took to make it was approximately the same – 20 minutes.

 Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week.

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