I know that I rarely post actual recipes on here. This is not a conscious decision, rather it is indicative of the way that I approach cooking – as a freeform process as opposed to a rigid set of rules. But I do like to make the occasional exception, especially when I receive such a large number of requests.
The post I wrote last week about breakfast muffins garnered the best response I think I have ever had and it was heart warming to receive so many great messages and requests for the recipe.
These are proper muffins that should rise up out of their paper houses, light and tasty. They are also relatively healthy and a great way to start the day, especially with a mug of coffee. The whisking of the egg whites aids the rising process by incorporating a substantial amount of air into the mixture and I doubt I will ever make muffins any other way after discovering this method.
So, without further ado, here is the recipe (and the picture again, for good measure)
150g of plain flour
150g of wholemeal flour
50g of oats
50g of caster sugar
3 teaspoons of baking powder
A generous handful of seeds (poppy, sunflower and pumpkin)
One orange, zested and juiced
One carrot, finely grated
Two eggs, separated
150ml of vanilla yoghurt
100ml of sunflower oil
Two handfuls of dried fruits (dates, cranberries, raisins)
A pinch of cinnamon or mixed spice
A little vanilla extract.
Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl (flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, seeds, fruit and spices). Gradually incorporate the wet ingredients (oil, yoghurt, orange zest and juice, carrot and egg yolks) until you have a batter.
Whilst the oven is heating up (200 degrees) whisk the egg whites until they have at least doubled in size and form billowing, cloud like white peaks. Mix a large spoonful of the batter into the egg whites and then gradually add this mixture to the batter. Try not to overwork the mixture as you will knock out all of the air that you worked so hard to attain.
When the oven is up to temperature, spoon enough of the mixture into waiting muffin cases so that they are almost too full. When they rise in the oven they should have no other place to go except up and over.
Bake them for about twenty minutes or until they are cooked all the way through and a gentle brown colour on the top.
The basic recipe can be personalised any way you wish: Lemon and poppy seed, banana and fudge, cranberry and orange, blueberry and vanilla. Feel free to play around with it and please do let me know how you get on. I’d love to see some pictures. Also, feel free to replace the wholemeal flour with plain white flour if you want an even lighter muffin.