Tuesday, September 12, 2006
My new favorite cookbook
Whole-Wheat Strawberry Muffins
Cakes: 1,001 Classic Recipes from Around the World Copyright 2003
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar I used light brown sugar
1 cup milk I used Super Skim
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
1 cup fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped I would definitely use 1 1/2 - 2 cups next time
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter and flour a 12-cup muffin pan, or line with foil or paper baking cups. Sift both flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Stir in the brown sugar and make a well in the center. Beat in the milk, eggs, and butter with an electric mixer at low speed. Stir in the strawberries. Spoon the batter into prepared cups, filling each ¾ full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. (I think 15-20 minutes is probably more accurate.) Cool the muffins on racks.
Makes 12 muffins.
I'm in love. Not with these muffins, which were excellent, but with this cookbook, this wonderful cookbook. Recipe after recipe after recipe. And about half the recipes have glorious photographs. Chocolate cakes, pound cakes, fruit cakes, sponge cakes, nut cakes, cheesecakes, ice cream cakes. Anything that can remotely be called a cake is in this book. They even threw in some recipes for tarts, icings, fillings and ice creams. From the simplest plain loaf cake to complicated fancy pastries. This was a 2004 IACP award nominee in the Compilations Category. I haven't seen the other nominees but I'm sure this book was robbed. This is the kind of cookbook that you don't need to use - just looking at it and dreaming about all these cakes makes owning it worth it.
These muffins were just a chance to put my toe in the water of this book, since I'm still recovering from Labor Day weekend and I have to resist making anything too extravagant right now. So I had to skip past the fancy cakes for the time being. This wasn't too much of a sacrifice - I really liked these muffins. They were only slightly sweet. The aroma from the strawberries was wonderful. I would say these definitely needed more strawberries. Don't try to pass off too-tart berries in this recipe. You probably could substitute with another berry or fruit but I don't think you could top strawberries. These were best straight out of the oven with some butter but the strawberries kept the muffins moist for a few days.
I replaced my baking powder and I can see a difference. I don't know why I waited so long - baking powder isn't that expensive. I didn't even realize I wasn't using an aluminum-free baking powder. I had the Rumford but I'm not sure what happened to it. Not everyone carries that brand here so maybe that's why I ended up Clabber Girl. I bought Bob's Red Mill brand this time.
This is my contribution to Sweetnick's ARF/5-A-Day Tuesdays, as strawberries are high in antioxidants and they're one of the world's healthiest foods.
Blast From The Past: Seared Salmon with Balsamic Glaze from September of 2005. I love salmon and I loved this recipe but I hate the way my house smells after I cook salmon. I keep forgetting I could cook this outside. My grill has a side burner.
Question of the Day: What is your favorite cake? (Have I asked this question before?)