Yummy fruity muffins

Eli’s not the easiest baby to have around when you’re trying to cook or bake something – he’s quite annoyed at not being able to see what is going on and then tries to grab everything if you’re cuddling him. So if I want to make anything it really needs to be quick and easy and that’s why I love these muffins. They satiate my need to bake but unlike cakes don’t need to be iced so a few steps and 30ish minutes and I’m eating yummy food. The base recipe I use is by John Burton Race and I found it in a kids cookbook called ‘Star Cooks’ that Lex was given as a gift some years ago.

So far I’ve made a variety of flavours and they’ve all been yummy – blueberry, blueberry and raspberry; raspberry and white choc chip; apricot; peach and choc chip; cranberry, white choc chip and poppy-seed; cranberry and white choc chip; and blueberry and banana. The only problem with making them is I then end up eating them all within a few days…

Equipment

  • 12 hole muffin tray
  • silicon or paper muffin cups or a little bit of butter for greasing the muffin tray
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • measuring jug
  • whisk
  • mixing spoon
  • scales
  • measuring spoons

Ingredients

  • 500g plain flour
  • 250g castor sugar
  • 2 tsp custard powder
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 150g – 200g chopped fruit (fresh, frozen or dried)/nuts/seeds/choc chips
  • 2 eggs
  • 185ml sunflower oil
  • 185ml milk

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 190°C.
  2. Place the muffin cups in the tray or lightly grease the tray if not using muffin cups (I use a set of silicon muffin cups because I can’t really be bothered with the effort of greasing or the waste of paper).
  3. Whisk the milk, oil and eggs together.
  4. In another bowl place the remaining ingredients.
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until all the flour is incorporated (can take a little bit of elbow grease).
  6. Portion the batter into the muffin cups – the muffins don’t rise excessively so don’t worry if they are quite full.
  7. Place the tray in the oven and bake for 20-35 minutes until the muffins are golden and springy when touched.
  8. Once cooked remove the muffins from the oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes and then place on a wire cooling rack (I take mine out of the silicon cups at this point).
  9. Eat at least one muffin warm from the oven.

Getting ready for a birthday party – less than a day’s enough time surely?

Tomorrow is Eli’s first birthday party – his actual birthday isn’t until Monday but having his party on the Saturday means all of his baby group friends can come so on the weekend it is. I love first birthday parties and Eli’s is the last I’ll be organising for a child of my own. We’ve got a semi-theme – cars as Eli likes anything with wheels – so the cake is going to be a garage with little fondant cars. Of course, since it’s us, the cake is still cooking and will have to be decorated tonight. I don’t think we’ve ever done a birthday cake at anything other than the last minute.

We’ve been fairly busy this week and not much preparation has happened at all yet, our birthday party to do list is therefore extensive:

  • bake cake (nearly there)
  • decorate cake
  • buy ingredients for party food
  • make party food
  • buy the last couple of bits for the party bags (yes for sub-one year olds I know, I know)
  • pack the party bags
  • clean the house
  • clean the house again after the kids invariably undo all the tidying I’ve already done
  • panic
  • check to see whether Eli still fits in the outfit I want him to wear
  • try to work out how we’re going to fit everybody in the lounge as the weather looks unlikely to cooperate (60% chance of rain – Eli was supposed to be my chance to have an outdoor party!)

I’m sure it will be fine, that I haven’t really prepped at all won’t be a problem will it? I mean the party’s only at 1.30pm tomorrow – we’ve ages yet…