by Anna on December 8, 2012
Sometimes finding recipes to share on Sweet Peas is next to impossible. It’s not because I’m lacking inspiration or because I’ve been jumping from one culinary disaster to the next. It’s because about 80% of what I cook comes from Smitten Kitchen. Deb Perelman must surely be the most popular food blogger on the interwebs and deservedly so – her recipes are easy but interesting and her instructions so thorough and clear. So many of her recipes are in our regular rotation (see eg Indian-spiced vegetable fritters, spinach and chickpeas and world peace cookies). Though Deb is surely a genius, who wants to read about all the recipes I’ve cooked from another food blog? How boring, not to mention unoriginal (and potentially unlawful?).
To make matters worse, Deb recently released a cookbook which is every bit as incredible as you imagine. I’m desperate to make nearly every recipe in the book. Or I would be if I wasn’t stuck on the very first recipe I tried: brown butter and poppy seed muffins with berries. These muffins are everything muffins should be – in other words, appropriate for breakfast. They’re not too sweet, full of wholegrain flour and so delicate. Though the muffins are modest in their buttery-ness, the fact that Deb has you brown the butter first makes them richer, toastier.
I did make one major change to Deb’s recipe, which originally called for sliced plums. Plums aren’t in season in Australia yet and we always have berries in our freezer so I used them instead. My housemate, Rosie, also suggested I rename the muffins AM muffins (or surprise!! morning muffins) because they have a habit of coming out of the oven before 7 am in our house. In the last few years I’ve become the Worst Sleeper Ever. I regularly wake up at 3 am. Sometimes I drift back to sleep but mostly I pin things, watch Grey’s Anatomy and bake. These early mornings probably aren’t very good for me but I don’t mind. I like drinking tea and hearing the birds waking up. In any case, these more than make up for any lack of sleep. Can you tell I’m smitten?
Brown Butter, Berry and Poppy Seed Muffins (recipe adapted from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman)
Makes 9 – 12 muffins
85 g unsalted butter
1 large egg
50 g (1/4 c) white sugar
50 g (1/4 c lightly packed) brown sugar
180 g (3/4 c) sour cream
60 g (1/2 c) wholewheat flour
125 g (1 c) plain flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
20 g (2 tbsp poppy seeds)
1 generous cup frozen berries (I use a mix of raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and strawberries)
1. Preheat the oven to 190′C/375′F. Line twelve muffin cups with large patty cases.
2. Make the brown butter. In a small saucepan melt the butter over medium-low heat. It will melt, then foam, then subside and turn a golden brown. At this point it will smell nutty. Stir throughout this process, scraping up the flecks on the bottom of the pan. When it starts to smell nutty, remove it from the heat. It should look like this.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the egg and both sugars. Stir in the butter and sour cream.
4. Sift both flours, baking powder and baking soda into a large mixing bowl. Add the salt, cinnamon and poppy seeds and stir to combine. Gently stir in the butter mixture until just combined. Fold in the berries.
5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Bake for 15 – 18 minutes or until the muffins are a faint golden and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- The recipe states that it will yield 12 muffins but I usually end up with 9 or 10.