Ugly but good…
I forgot something of vital importance the other morning.
No, you in the back with that smirk on your face, it wasn’t my pants.
And no, it wasn’t to turn the time forward one hour for daylight savings, either. (It was my phone that forgot to do that, not me. I therefore take no responsibility for running one hour late to everything on Sunday, before I finally figured out what was going on. At noon, which I thought was 11am. Yep. Phone’s fault.)
No, you in the back there with that smirk still on your face, it wasn’t my underpants. Who do you think I am? Britney Spears?
Give it a rest. I shall never be a Slave 4 U.
The seemingly insignificant fact that I forgot was this: savoury muffin batter doesn’t taste as good as sweet muffin batter.
You might not think forgetting this is a big deal, but when you’ve cheekily decided to retain a lot of raw batter in the mixing bowl as a Cook’s Treat to enjoy while the rest of the batter bakes in the oven, well… you sort of want it to taste good.
But it turns out that the silly batter only tastes dandy once it’s transmogrified into a muffin.
A delicately-crumbed yet hefty, herb-flecked and subtly nutty mushroom-studded muffin, that is. A muffin that you’ve brainstormed as your contribution to A Slice of Cherry Pie’s “In The Bag” September 2010 event.
This is the first blog event I’ve ever contributed to, and I’m hoping the fact that I’m posting these muffins in October for a September event won’t be held against me. The brief was this: created something using the seasonal ingredients of mushrooms, herbs, and nuts. I first considered risottos, dips, soups, and bruschetta, but in the end I wanted a savoury muffin. So I took this Cumin and Pea Muffin recipe and changed it drastically, subbing some of the flour with hazelnut meal, switching cumin and peas for mushrooms and thyme, and, well, making it vegan.
Because sometimes, that’s what I do, whether for not-Nutella brownies, caraway cake, or the little fellas below, which are equally delicious on their own as with a bowl of something like eggplant and tahini soup for lunch.
So don’t forget to give these a try. (Oh, and don’t forget your pants. I hear those things are useful for avoiding arrest when you walk past schoolyards.)
Mushroom, Thyme, and Hazelnut Muffins, Which Are Also A Little Bit Vegan. Ta-Daa!
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 200g finely chopped mushrooms
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 1/2 cups (225g) self-raising flour
- 1/2 cup (75g) hazelnut meal
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 80g Nuttelex/dairy-free spread, melted (or butter, for you butter-lovers!)
- 1 tb (15ml) flaxmeal, stirred together with 3 tb (45ml) water (or 1 egg, lightly beaten, for you egg-lovers!)
- 1 cup soy milk (or normal milk, for… I think you can see where I’m heading with this by now)
- 1 tsp tamari
- Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Grease twelve 1/3 cup capacity muffin holes.
- Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Tip in the mushrooms, garlic, and thyme, and cook for 5-10 minutes until the mushrooms have released their liquid and this liquid has then evaporated. In other words: cook your mushrooms, pants-wearing people. Allow mushrooms to cool.
- Sift flour, hazelnut meal, and baking powder into a bowl. (Pssst… I didn’t sift. Rebel!) Combine the melted spread/butter, flaxmeal mixture/egg, milk and tamari in a jug, then tip into flour mixture.
- Stir gently until almost combined, then fold in the mushroom mixture. Don’t over-stir, or the muffins will turn out to be dense like [insert your favourite hated politician here]. Fill the muffin holes three-quarters full.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden on top and a skewer inserted in the centre of a muffin comes out clean. Gobble up at least one muffin straight away, revelling in the fact that it tastes so much better now that the scrapings of the batter-bowl did twenty minutes ago.
What’s that you say? I’m flogging a dead horse with this batter-eating story-thread? No I’m not! This recipe is vegan, after all. No dead animals here.