My first baking creations were muffins. You can't go wrong with muffins and this is one of those baked goodies you can be really creative on. You can have sweet and even savory muffins - the possibilities are endless.
Aside from the ingredients you would put in your muffin, there is only one thing that you may want to achieve or probably be expert on - The Muffin Top. That is what you are looking for in a muffin, the dome shape top, right? A muffin, looks awful and sad if it has a flat top. And yes, during my first attempts to bake muffins, I achieve that perfectly - the flat top, a number of times actually. Now, how does one achieve that lovely top? The key to a gorgeous muffin top is shocking the mixture by having a high temp oven and then lower down the temp after 5 mins or so. High temperature makes the mixture bubble thus creating that dome shape of the muffin. Cool huh?
So, from a number of muffins I did, I came up with this basic muffin recipe to which you can adapt and just be creative around it on - - what to add to the mixture or what to replace what with what.
BASIC MUFFIN RECIPE
(print this recipe)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk (fresh milk or full cream milk - room temp)
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 egg (room temp)
1/3 cup unsalted butter (room temp)
1. Pre-heat over to 200C (390F) and line muffin tray/s with cupcake liners.
2. Mix all dry ingredients together (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt). Set aside.
3. In a separate bowl, using whisk or a mixer, cream butter and sugar. Add egg, vanilla and milk. Mix well.
4. Pour wet mixture to your dry ingredients and fold. Do not over mix.
5. Add your flavorings. (see below how for further instructions)
6. Scoop batter in prepared muffin trays, about 3/4 full.
7. Bake for 5 minutes then lower your oven temp to 150C (300F) and bake for another 10 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
Yields 12 regular sized muffins
In this entry, I will feature three (3) variations to this basic recipe:
1. Choco Chip Muffin
Step #5 - add 1/2 cup choco chip to the mixture
2. Cheese Muffin
Step #5 - add 1 cup grated cheddar cheese to the mixture
Optional - add more grated cheese on top before baking
3. Choco-Banana Muffin
Replace 1/2 cup milk with mashed 3 large ripe bananas (approx 1 cup)
Step#5 (optional) - add 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder