Friday, January 25, 2008

Strawberry Muffins

While strawberry might not be the first flavor one thinks of in a muffin, it is a universally loved fruit and incorporating it in a feel-good muffin might just be what you need for a morning treat or, like me, for an afternoon coffee when I want something satisfying but not overly rich.

This recipe was inspired by one of the baking books I got last Christmas (I got 2 new books last Christmas! wohoo!); it was compiled by Taste of Home, an American brand food magazine, and eponymously titled The Taste of Home Baking Book. It was ordered online by my sister C and upon receiving it, she found it especially homey, since it was composed of recipes by homemakers. So, every recipe was pretty much a fool-proof one--or, at the very least, worked for somebody. She was contemplating whether to go as planned and give it to me or actually keep it for herself, but as she wrote in her greeting card "Here's a book that I found very useful and I had a hard time parting with it, but I know you would need it more than I do", which I interpreted as, "you're my little sister and you deserve the best!" (hyuk)In any case, the book is a goldmine of irresistable recipes which I'm just too happy to be on the receiving end of. And there's even a provision of 2 splash guards " keep the pages clean". How neat is that?!

Strawberry Muffins

2 C sifted all purpose flour
1 C sugar
1/2t baking powder
1/2t baking soda
1/2t salt

2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 C strawberry yogurt
1/2 C vegetable oil
1/2 t vanilla extract

36 pcs fresh strawberries, crushed

Preheat oven to 400F. Put paper liners on 22 muffin holes, pour water on empty holes.

1. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients, mix well. In another bowl, combine all the wet, mix well.
2. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the wet into it. Mix lightly using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon until all of the dry ingredients are moistened. DO NOT over mix, it would be a bit lumpy and it's OK.
3. Deposit on prepared muffin pan, filling 1/3's full (can use an ice cream scooper for easier transport). Place some crushed strawberries on the center and top with more batter; the idea is about 1 1/2 strawberry per muffin.
4. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer on racks and let cool.

The texture of this is very muffin-like with an open crumb and a flavor reminiscent to strawberry milkshakes, thanks to a large quantity of yogurt used. The original recipe called for mixing 1.5C of fresh or frozen (unthawed) strawberries mixed with the flour mixture, but as it has a tendency to discolor the whole batter, I opted for a strawberry fill-in with no complaints at all.

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