MUFFINS (Low liquid vegetable fat and low Sugar)
Reduced sugar; you soon get used to it, but be aware that you may have to keep cakes in the fridge, as sugar is a preservative as well as a sweetener.
Reduced total fat; more fruit content gives a moister end product, to balance the reduced fat content.
My muffin recipe only has 5% fat and only 10% added sugar, compared with commercial muffins which will often have 17% fat and 25% sugar.
The texture of home made Muffins is quite different from the strange, oily sponge of the shop bought muffins.
Muffins are an ideal way of using fresh fruit, to get a moist sweet Muffin with the sharp contrast of the unsweetened fruit. Some fruit, such as blueberries, pears and grapes are naturally sweet. Good with contrasting sharp fruit.
Required Utensils. Large Muffin trays, oiled. Large mixing bowl, and plastic jug.
Quantities are enough for 12 very large muffins, or 18 small muffins. As the quantity of sugar has been reduced, store in fridge or freezer if not to be eaten immediately. Difficult I know!
Once you have added the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients, bake them immediately in the oven for the best results. If you are using a small oven, split the quantities and mix them individually just before being baked.
Ingredients. Prepare about 1 litre jug of fruit, from a selection of what you have available. Apples and pears should be cored and cut into small dice. Seedless grapes should be cut in half. Blackcurrants and small gooseberries should be topped and tailed. Blueberries and Cranberries should be washed. You will also need 1/2 kg ( 3½ cups) of plain flour, 2 tbsp of baking powder, 150 grams (2/3 cup) sugar, 75 grams ( 4 tbsp) of liquid vegetable oil, 250 ml ( 1 cup ) of milk, 2 beaten eggs and 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
Method. Mix together in a large bowl, the sifted flour and baking powder. In a mixing jug, beat together the eggs, liquid vegetable oil, the sugar, the milk and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Add to the mixing bowl and stir until just combined. Gently combine with the fruit. Divide up into the muffin tins and bake at 200 C (gas mark 6) for 20 - 25 minutes, until they are slightly springy to the touch.
To save on time and money, consider baking the Muffins first. While they are baking at the higher temperature, prepare a tart for baking at the high temperature, or a cake and bake at a lower temperature.
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