Lemon Mini Muffins

It is yet another Six Nations weekend and while thats on the tv, I take refuge in the kitchen! I saw a recipe for lemon mini muffins earlier in the week and when I remembered I still had lemons in the fridge this was a no brainer. I took the recipe a step further than the original, by swirling lemon curd through the batter before baking. I used a fancy lemon curd I bought from sainsburys, but next time will definitely be trying to make my own.

You might notice that my muffins aren’t particularly aesthetically pleasing (flat  explody tops – oops!) but they are so tasty I didn’t mind! You can also make these into full size muffins, just adjust the baking time as stated below.

Lemon Mini Muffins

(Adapted from Crepes of Wrath)

For the Crumb Topping:

  • 45g plain flour
  • 45g dark brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 40g unsalted butter, room temperature and cubed
For the Mini Muffins:

  • 125g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarb of soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 55g unsalted butter, room temperature and cubed
  • 110g granulated sugar
  • zest of 3 lemons
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 120g crème fraîche
  • Lemon Curd (bought or homemade)
For the Glaze:

  • 60g icing sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp lemon juice
Makes around 25
1. Start by making the crumb topping by chucking the flour, brown sugar, salt, zest and butter into a bowl and rub it all together with your fingers. When combined and crumbly, stick in the fridge while you make the muffin batter.
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2. Next, the muffin batter. Preheat the oven to 180°C. In a bowl, combine the  flour, baking powder, bicarb and salt and set to one side. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg and vanilla.
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3. Add in the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the creme fraiche. When its all combined, divide into paper cases in a muffin tin. At this point, dollop a 1/4 teaspoon of lemon curd onto the batter and swirl around with a cocktail stick. Top with the crumb topping. Place in the oven for 10-12 mins with a turn if your oven cooks unevenly. If you’ve chosen to make full size muffins, they should take around 18-20 mins. Let cool completely before glazing.
Oops.
4. You’ll notice I haven’t got glaze on my muffins as they’re pretty tasty as is. However if you want to go for it, mix the lemon juice into the icing sugar and drizzle over the tops of the muffins.
Yum!

Blogs I like: Annie’s Eats

Evening all! Got some baking planned for the weekend so expect another foodie post from me at some point! In the mean time, check out one of my favourite blogs: Annie’s Eats.

I recently started thinking about where I got the baking buzz from and I realised that after a browse around StumbleUpon many years ago, I had come across Annie and her lovely looking food. Cue lots of testing of her posted recipes!

As well as some great cupcake recipes, there are plenty of other recipes that are worth testing. Thanks to Annie, I no longer buy tortilla wraps, burger buns, frozen pizzas etc. Homemade bread is always a win.

Now be aware, Annie is American and therefore goes down the standard route of measuring things out in cups. You can pick up a set for relatively cheap, or you can manually convert stuff using websites such as www.onlineconversion.com/cooking.htm.

Right, I’m off to pore over some recipe books (deciding what to bake is obviously much more challenging that the baking itself…), enjoy Annie’s blog and I’ll see you in a few days 🙂

Millionaire’s Shortbread and a Very Special Christmas Present

Well, well, well – look what I got for Christmas! Wahoooo! I’m well aware I’m showing how cool I am, but I still can’t quite get over how ace it is. Only problem so far is that it means I’m doing waaayyyy more baking thats far too easy to eat. Oops!

So there’s been a distinct lack of posting of late. This is due to many reasons; mainly its being busy with my job that I started back in June and the fact that my new flat has close to zero natural light. Therefore my usual sketchy photography is taken back to near diabolical. My apologies.

While I work on my dire photography skills, I’ll share with you a recipe that I tried out a few months ago that I’d wanted to test out for ages!

Millionaire’s Shortbread

(Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food and the Carnation website)

Shortbread:

  • 250g plain flour
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 175g butter, softened

Caramel:

  • 150g butter
  • 150g dark brown soft sugar
  • 397g can Condensed Milk

Chocolate:

  • 200g Dark Chocolate
  • 50g White Chocolate/Milk Chocolate (optional)

1. Start by preheating your oven to 180°C and grease and line a 13×9 inch swiss roll sheet pan with baking paper.

2. To make the shortbread, put the flour and sugar in a bowl and mix. Rub in the butter until it looks like breadcrumbs. Pull the mixture together into a dough, picking up all the dry ingredients. Press this dough into your prepared pan. Prick all over with a fork and place in the oven for around 20 minutes until very lightly browned.

3. Prepare the caramel while the shortbread cools. Heat the dark brown sugar and butter in a pan until the sugar has melted. While stirring continuously, add in the tin of condensed milk and bring to the boil fairly quickly. Cook for a minute or two until the caramel has thickened. Pour over the cooled shortbread and place in the fridge to set.

4. Next, melt the dark chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water, or melt in the microwave (in short bursts with regular stirring to avoid burning). Pour the chocolate over the caramel and shortbread and spread out evenly. If you want to get a bit more creative you can melt white or milk chocolate and, using a spoon, drizzle the it over the still runny dark chocolate. Use a toothpick to swirl the two chocolates together.

Now you’ll notice that I’ve actually done a base of milk chocolate with dark chocolate swirled in. Thats because I forgot until I just uploaded the picture! You can do any combination of chocolate you like though – I’m currently envisioning white chocolate with dark chocolate swirled in – yep definitely going to have to try that one now!

Also, as you can see in the picture above, I discovered my swiss roll pan was slightly too long and I couldn’t spread out my shortbread any more – no big deal, just some edges that I had to neaten up*.

And there you have it! I always thought Millionaire’s Shortbread was really hard to make, but as you can see – easy peasy!

*When I say neaten up, I obviously mean ‘stuff my face with’**.

**In fact I neatened up so many edges I’m not allowed to make these again…