RASPBERRY MUFFINS

This is pretty easy to make. You can either use fresh or frozen berries. If you are using frozen berries, do not thaw them.   Take them out when needed.  If you are using fresh berries, try not to rinse them if they are not overly dirty (usually they are not) because raspberries are fragile and bruise easily.  Instead, use a brush (a clean watercolor paint brush will do) and brush off any traces of dirt and they are ready.  Before you start mixing your batter,  place 12 paper cups in your muffin tray.

raspberry

INGREDIENTS   (for 12 full big muffins)

250-gram butter softened

200-gram sugar

250-gram flour

2½  teaspoon baking powder, combine flour

4 eggs

About  1.5 dl (150ml) fresh milk

METHOD

1) Turn on your oven to 180C degrees.

2)    Beat butter and sugar until white. If you have a machine, use it for a faster and easier job. If you do not have a machine, beat with a hand whisk until white. This will take some time.

3)     Add eggs one at a time. After adding all 4 eggs don’t whisk anymore.

4)     Next, add half of the flour into batter. Whisk quickly.  Next step, add all the milk, whisk and finally rest of the flour.  Do not be attempted to beat further as this will produce tough muffins.

5)     Spoon the batter into the paper cups until ¾ cup full.

6)     Take your raspberries out from the fridge or freezer and sprinkle them all over your muffins.

7)     Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. The baking time should be a guide only. You need to test the muffins a few minutes before the end of the baking time. Insert a bamboo skewer (those thin ones meant for BBQ are good)and check that no wet crumbs are clinging onto the skewer. When the skewer finally comes out clean, take the muffin tray out immediately. You may let them stay in the tray for 10 minutes before taking them out gently to rest on the cooling rack.

PUMPKIN AND RAISIN MUFFIN

This is a delicious muffin and the color is superb.  I love muffins best after they come out from the oven. If you are not eating them yet, please store them in an airtight container.  From my experience, the muffins are still good when they are stored in Tupperware and left at room temperature for up to 3 days in cold countries in Europe. In Asia, they can be stored in airtight container and left overnight at room temperature but not for another day. They should then go into the refrigerator but then, they will not taste as good due to a change in texture.

INGREDIENTS (for 6 big muffins)

  • 125-gram butter softened at room temperature
  • 125-gram sugar
  • 125-gram flour
  • 1 ½  teaspoon baking powder.  Mix this into flour.
  • 2 eggs
  • 60ml milk
  • 50 gram of very finely grated pumpkin
  • Sunflower seeds or sliced almond nuts

METHOD

  • Beat butter and sugar until white.
  • Add eggs one at a time. Stop whisking after adding all the eggs.
  • Add half the flour into butter, sugar and egg mixture. Give it a quick mix.
  • Add milk into the batter, whisk, then rest of flour. Another quick mix.
  • Add the grated pumpkin. Combine well.
  • Spoon into your muffin cups at ¾ full.
  • Scatter raisins over the top. It is up to you how much raisins you want in the muffins.
  • If you like, sprinkle sunflower seeds or sliced almond on top of raisins.
  • Bake at 175 to 180 Celsius degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.
  • At 25 mins, test the muffins by inserting a wooden skewer in the middle. It should come out clean. If it doesn’t, continue baking and keep testing.

BISCOTTI – Fruits and Nuts

Biscotti means twice-baked cookies. Normally, bicotti are baked until done then re-bake until crisp.  This recipe for biscotti is baked once and will achieve a crisp rim and soft texture.  After taking the logs out of the oven and resting about 10 minutes, transfer them to a cutting board. Cut diagonally into 1/2 inch slices.  I like it this way.

If you prefer a whole crisp cookie, do put it back into the hot oven for a  good 6 minutes after cooling and cutting from the first bake.   Bake 3 minutes on one side, turn slices over and bake for another 3 minutes. Remove and let rest.  After completely cooled, store in airtight container and they will last for a month. Mine always run out after the first week. They are best eaten when dipped into a good cup of Kafe (Danish for coffee).

INGREDIENTS  (about 20 large size biscotti)

  • 350g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp veg oil
  • 150g sugar
  • 5 eggs  beaten lightly
  • coarsely grated zest 1lemon and 1 lime
  • 100gm raisins
  • 85gm dried orange peel
  • 50gm blanched almonds
  • 50gm hazel nuts or pistachio
  • some preserved red and green cherries
  • 1 ½  Tsp salt

METHOD

  1. Combine dry ingredients – flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder.
  2. Combine wet ingredients – beaten eggs, oil and almond extract.
  3. Mix lightly both dry and wet ingredients in a mixer or with your hands.
  4. Add the fruits and peels. Combine well.
  5. Your batter is likely to be sticky but not mushy. If you have a mushy batter , add 1 or 2 tbsp of flour until it reach a sticky consistency where it is not mushy but not clean to the touch either. You will find that bits of the dough is likely to cling onto your finger.
  6. Divide into 2 portions and shape them into 2 logs
  7. Bake about 30 mins at 180 to 190 degee Celsius

Cool 10 minutes and cut diagonally