Most muffins are packed with fat, but this delicious savoury muffin recipe is low in fat and makes a great morning or afternoon snack. It’s also makes a great school lunch box snack idea for the kids.
Preparation Time: 15 mins. Cooking Time: 25 mins
Makes: 6 large muffins
1⁄2 cup pumpkin, roughly chopped in 1cm dices
1⁄2 cup zucchini, roughly chopped in 1cm dices
1⁄2 cup spring onions, sliced
1 large handful baby spinach leaves
1 cup skim milk
A pinch pepper to taste
2 cup wholemeal flour 1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
1. Preheat oven to 180C. Place pumpkin into a microwave-safe bowl, cover with water and cook in the microwave for 3 minutes or until slightly softened. Drain and add zucchini, spring onions and spinach.
2. Lightly beat eggs and milk, pour over the vegetables and season.
3. Sift flour and baking powder over the top and stir until just combined.
4. Spoon mixture into baking paper lined, non-stick muffin trays, sprinkling with pumpkin seeds, and bake for 25 minutes or until done.
5. Top with low fat cream cheese and serve.
Cooking tips: Also try adding crumble low fat fetta and chopped sundried tomatoes into the mix.
What are your favourite muffin flavours?
There’s nothing better than fresh, out-of-the-oven warm scones, slathered with jam and cream. And who better to share their best scones recipe than CWA judge and MasterChef guest Merle Parrish…
From Merle’s Country Show Baking and Other Favourites Copyright © Merle Parrish 2013 Reprinted by Permission of Random House Australia All Rights Reserved RRP $39.95 by Ebury Illustrated. Available now from bookstores and online retailers.
Prep Time: 10 mins. Cooking Time: 12–15 mins
3 cups self-raising flour
1 tsp cornflour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tbsp cream
1–1 1/2 cups milk, plus extra to brush
jam and cream to serve
1. Preheat oven to hot (220°C) and lightly grease a baking tray.
2. Sift the flours, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Use a butter knife to mix in the cream and enough milk to make a soft dough.
3. Gather the dough together and turn out onto a lightly floured bench. Knead gently and briefly until smooth. Don’t overwork the dough or you will have tough scones.
4. Use a rolling pin to roll out to about 1.5cm thick. Cut out rounds with a 5cm round cutter and place slightly apart on the tray. Brush tops lightly with milk, and bake for 12–15 minutes, until risen and lightly browned.
5. Serve warm or at room temperature, with jam and cream.
What are your favourite old-fashioned baking recipes?
How good do these pineapple cupcakes look? You’ll love the surprise of the decadent cream cheese and honey filling with each bite.
1 cup wholemeal flour
1 cup spelt flour
3 tsp baking powder
½ cup raw sugar
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1¼ cups low fat Greek yoghurt or light sour cream
3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
½ cup light cream cheese
2 tbsp honey
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a 12-hole (⅓cup capacity) muffin tray with patty cases.
2. To make the filling, combine cream cheese and honey in a small bowl, set aside.
3. Place flours, sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl, stir to combine.
4. Place yoghurt, eggs and coconut oil into another bowl, whisk to combine. Add yoghurt mixture to the dry ingredients, stir with a wooden spoon until just combined (do not over mix). Add 2 cups of the pineapple dice to batter, gently stir to combine.
5. Spoon batter among prepared patty cases. Dollop the cream cheese filling equally on top of each filled patty case then press filling slightly down into batter. Sprinkle with remaining pineapple over the top. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and just firm to touch. Stand in pan for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Recipe by Dr Joanna McMillan for Australian Pineapples
What are your favourite cupcake flavours? Tell us in the comments!
Not just a favourite after-school snack for the kids, Marmite scrolls are delicious fresh out of the oven any time. They’re so easy to make and ready in less than 30 minutes. This is a great recipe to get your kids baking, too.
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
60 g margarine
200ml soy milk or dairy milk
4 tsp Sanitarium Marmite
3/4 cup grated Edam cheese
1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. Using your fingertips rub the margarine into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
2. Make a well in the centre of the flour mix and add the milk. Mix together then gently knead with hands to form a dough.
3. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 20 x 30 cm rectangle. Spread the dough with Sanitarium Marmite, then sprinkle with cheese, leaving some for later.
4. Roll the dough from the long side into a roll. Slice the roll into 10 even slices and place each piece cut side up onto a lightly-greased baking tray. Sprinkle with extra cheese on top of each scroll.
5. Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes or until scrolls have risen and cooked through.
Tip: Finely chopped onions, spinach leaves, tomato slices, basil leaves, pistachios, walnuts, sun-dried tomatoes, pesto or pumpkin seeds can all be included in the toppings. Sprinkle over before rolling dough up.
What is your favourite afternoon treat?
Start your weekend with a decadent brunch. Chocolate cafe Max Brenner shares their Belgian waffle recipe with butterscotch chips, roasted pineapple and white chocolate orange maple sauce. Our tip? Start the waffles the night before and prepare the sauce and roasted pineapple in advance, so all you have to do it wake up, assemble and enjoy! We like to make a batch of these golden waffles and freeze them for instant weekend breakfasts. Make sure you serve with bottomless Bellinis!
Makes: 10 waffles
3 1/2 cups plain flour
1/2 cup milk, plus more if needed
1/2 cup cream
Scant 1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 envelope dry yeast
230g unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butterscotch candies, chopped, plus more for topping
White chocolate and orange maple sauce
3/4 cup cream
240g white chocolate, chopped
Zest of 1 orange
3 tablespoons orange juice
6 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
5 (1cm thick) pineapple slices
1. Make the waffle dough. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the flour, milk, cream, sugar, eggs and yeast. Mix on low to form a smooth dough, about 10 minutes. If dough is too dry or tough, add a little more milk 1 tablespoon at a time. Add the butter and salt and continue kneading until the dough becomes elastic and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, 10 o 15 minutes. It should not be sticky to the touch.
2. Let the dough rest in a lightly greased bowl at room temperature for about 1 hour. Turn the dough once and put in the fridge to rest for another hour. Turn it again and refrigerate for a minimum of 5 hours.
3. Add the butterscotch to the dough and mix well. Scoop the dough in heaping teaspoonful’s and roll into balls. Place the 10 balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment and let rise in a warm place for about 90 minutes.
4. Heat a waffle machine to 160C. Add a ball of dough to each section on the iron. Bake until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough.
5. Prepare the sauce. Bring the cream to a simmer. Pour over the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and let sit until the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and let sit until the chocolate begins to melt, about 1 minute. Add the orange zest and juice and stir until smooth. Let cool, then stir in the maple syrup.
6. Make the roasted pineapple. Melt the butter over the high heat in a non-stick pan. Add the sugar and pineapple slices. Cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side.
7. Place a waffle on each of 10 plates, add half a slice of roasted pineapple, and top with white chocolate and orange maple sauce. Sprinkle butterscotch pieces over the tops and serve hot.
What’s your favourite weekend breakfast?
Visit www.maxbrenner.com.au or for more Max Brenner recipes check out Chocolate: A love Story (65 chocolate dessert recipes from Max Brenner’s Private Collection).
How sweet are these lovely pear and vanilla cakes? They make a wonderful alternative to your morning muffin, or serve as an elegant afternoon tea treat. The aroma of baking pears and warm vanilla is heavenly!
2 litres water
2 2/3 cups (370g) caster sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
12x 125g Beurre Bosc pears, peeled and cored
125 g butter, softened
2/3 cup (150g) caster sugar
1 1/4 cups (190g) self-raising flour, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup (125 ml) milk
1. Place the water, sugar and vanilla in a saucepan over low heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
2. Add the pears, cover with a round of non-stick baking paper and a lid, and cook for 25–30 minutes or until tender.
3. Drain on absorbent paper, set aside and allow to cool.
4. Preheat oven to 160°C. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 8–10 minutes or until pale and creamy.
5. Gradually add the eggs and vanilla, beating well after each addition.
6. Fold in the flour and milk.
7. Line 12x 1 cup (250ml) capacity muffin tins with paper cases and spoon ¼ cup (60ml) of the mixture into each case.
8. Carefully push in the pears and bake for 30–35 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.
Recipe: Australian Pears
What’s your favourite morning tea treat?
Recently in New York I had the most delicious, moist banana cupcake topped with a luscious cream cheese frosting which I had to recreate at home (with some help from the bakery). I turned it into a banana cake to serve at afternoon tea but you can also bake them as cupcakes – either way, this is the best banana cake recipe you’ll ever try!
Tip: Make sure the bananas are over-ripe and black otherwise the banana flavour won’t come out in the cake.
Makes 1 cake or 24 cupcakes
125g butter, softened
2 1⁄2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
Pinch of sea salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
4-5 over-ripe (black) bananas, pureed to make 2 cups of banana puree
Cream cheese frosting
125g butter, softened
450g cream cheese (not low-fat)
8 cups icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 150C. Line a cake pan with baking paper or a cupcake tray with cupcake liners.
Combine butter and sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat until sugar and butter becomes light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla extract, then starting on low speed, start to beat the mixture, increasing to medium speed and beating until fluffy.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add half of the flour mixture to the egg mixture, followed by the buttermilk, then add the rest of the flour mixture. Mix gently until combined, be careful not to over-mix.
3. On a low speed, mix in the banana puree. Mix for 1 minute.
4. Scoop the dough into the cake pan or cupcake tray and bake for 50 minutes-1 hour for the cake or 20-25 minutes for cupcakes. Remove and allow to cool.
5. To make the cream cheese frosting, combine the butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl and mix on a medium speed for 5 minutes.
6. While mixing, slowly add the sugar to incorporate. Once all the sugar is mixed in, add the vanilla extract and continue to mix on medium speed for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Frost the cake or cupcakes when cool.
The cake or cupcakes will stay moist and fresh for 4 days if kept in an airtight container at room temperature – do not place in the fridge or the cake and frosting will dry.
What’s your favourite banana cake recipe?
This really is the best vanilla cupcake recipe we’ve tried (and we’ve tried a lot). The cupcake has a lovely, moist crumb that tastes just as good the next day, and the vanilla buttercream recipe is really easy to make and is fluffy and packed with vanilla flavour.
1 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
1 1/4 cups plain flour, softed
250g unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 175C. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers. Go and find some cute ones!
2. In a big bowl, combine the flours. Set aside. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are just incorporated but do not overbeat.
3. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full.
4. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the centre of the cupcake comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes in the tins then on a rack. When cool top with the vanilla buttercream icing.
Vanilla Buttercream Icing
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 1/2-3 cups icing sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 2 cups of the sugar and then the milk and vanilla. On the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar, beating well after each addition (about 2 minutes), until the icing is lovely and thick.
What’s your favourite cupcake recipe?