Monday, September 21, 2009

Savoury? More like flavoury!

When i say im a bake-aholic, i really mean that im a sweets bake-aholic. I read bread recipes and go 'eh, all that effort, and i still have to put something on it to taste good?' I think the closest i ever came to real savoury baking was the cheese and vegemite scrolls i made once. they were good, but they had nothing on bakers delight cheddermite scrolls so i abandoned savoury baking for another few years. This year i started getting curious though. I'd look at savoury muffin recipes and make faces, it just wasnt how god intended muffins to be! but still, there would be that little voice inside me going "but you love bacon, why not put it in a muffin? bacon goes well with everything... except maple syrup." then i would agree with the little voice "no, never maple syrup. crazy canadians."
Then today, i was thinking about what kind of muffin i wanted to make. i owed my dad some baked goods, he likes eating the spoils of my baking for breakfast, and the last of the chocolate peppermint cupcakes i made on the weekend went to my mums work them to eat while watching their weekly super exciting training video. now dad puts up with alot of weird, fruity cupcakes and you never hear a complaint, so i thought i would bake something just for him. to show just how lovely i am, i baked what i thought i may never ever bake... savoury. savoury MUFFINS no less. it was a very big, internal struggle for me, but i went out there, i spent 10 minutes looking for cornmeal, i didnt find it, but i didnt give up. i asked someone where it was, they asked me if it was the same as cornflour, i said i was pretty sure it wasnt, we said a few more things, then we found it. under its sneaky alias, 'polenta.' then i went to the deli and asked for sundried tomatoes, the girl asked if i wanted SUNdried, or SEMIdried. she was surly and made me feel silly for not knowing the difference. but i soldiered ON. i wasnt going to let the savoury muffin win this round. no no no. making the muffins was super easy, the sundried tomatoes were stinky but i managed to look past that when i saw how quick the muffins rose! polenta has some serious risability to it. i like it. We all had a little taste once they came out of the oven and numMERS! i dont even like sundried tomatoes and i liked them. So please, if you are scared of savoury muffins, know that i was once like you and have overcome these fears. My crippling fear of spiders remains but since i cant fix that with baking, i think i'll just ignore it for a bit and eat some of my new savoury muffins!
Cornmeal, in one of it's many packages.

Sundried tomatoes, getting their stinky oil all over the place.

the sundried tomatoes deceiving me into thinking they are bacon. i need to stop talking about bacon.

I havent worked with cornmeal before (incase i hadn't already made that blatantly obvious) so i wasnt sure how much they would rise, and the recipe book wasn't helping me out any, so i filled to here. the outer part of the cupcake didnt rise at all, but it domed up in the middle. I reckon next time i'll fill them up to a bit before the top and see what kind of wild ride that takes me on.

probably a misleading angle, makes them look all huge and mighty, but really they are pretty small.

Corn muffins with sun dried tomatoes

Muffin bible

Each of the recipes in the book is meant to make 12 muffins but this only made seven itty bitty little muffins. So i would recommend doubling this recipe. Fo sho. (You'll have to do the maths though, maths is not what im about). Foodbits.

  • 60g coarse cornmeal (or polenta, or whatever the shop feels like calling it that particular day)
  • 70g plain flour
  • 2tsp caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 small egg
  • 100ml milk
  • 1T corn oil (psht, like i was buying a bottle of corn oil just for this, i used vegetable oil)
  • 25g sundried tomatoes in oil, drained and finely chopped. (as you can see in the picture these muffins arent LOADED with tomatoes, and im really just all about overkill when it comes to choc chips and anything you add to muffins, so i reckon you could add like 40 or 50 grams of tomatoes and it would be more deliciouso without tampering with the muffin too much. ALSO while eating these i did remember my 'bacon makes everything better' rule and got to thinking. Next time i make these i reckon i would add a little salami or of course, bacon. Add anything you like really, a bit of garlic, olives, follow your tastebuds.)
What to do with the foodbits
  • preheat oven to 220C (ive got a fan forced so i lowered the temp to 200C)
  • Stir all dry ingredients in a bowl.
  • beat egg with milk and oil and gently mix into dry mixture.
  • fold chopped sundried tomatoes into batter.
  • spoon into greased muffin pans (they were a little hard to get out, but only because they were so solid. its worth the effort getting them out though, i think they would look weird in pretty cupcake cases, plus maybe they would stick to the paper.)
  • bake for 12 minutes. (the tops wont brown much, but the bottoms do so dont worry if they look slightly pale)

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