Wednesday, August 22, 2012

More Treats for You: Double Corn Muffins

 Yeah, so like I said before, I sucked at posting this summer. Part of the reason is because I haven't been doing too much cooking. I had a brief love affair with lunch, but that ended, and supper has been a steady stream of variations on this salad. I've been eating an unusual amount of red leaf lettuce and cucumbers lately. No excuses, except to say that in the summer, there are so many more things to do besides cook, and while I love cooking, I love cafe hopping, bike riding, warm afternoon naps, chats with best friends and other such lazy dazy activities. Such is life.

But I have been baking. Baking and preserving. But let's talk about the baking part. I always feel a need to bake in the summer, even when it's sweltering outside, because, well, baking rocks. It's a busy way to waste time, it's relaxing and challenging all at once, and in the end, you always get treats. And I always need treats in the summer time, especially when the end of August rolls around and the start of the school year looms over me, reminding me once again, that play time is over and it will soon be back to work (or legislated back to work as it stands right now ..) So it's settled. Summer time = baking time so let's get to it!

A few weeks ago, I visited one of my favourite farmer's markets, and couldn't resist buying a little basket of sugar plums. These little yellow jewels of sweet and tart usually play second fiddle to the berry and peach bounty that August brings, but at the moment, I could resist scooping up a basket to snack on and play with in the kitchen. The super sweet yellow corn was also calling my name. When I got home, I was aching to put the two together in a baking project. I found this beautiful cornbread muffin recipe after a quick internet search and decided add a double dose of corn to make it extra summery sweet and delicious. These muffins are a perfect afternoon snack, with a cup of nice, strong coffee, but they work perfectly as breakfast in the morning, paired with a bowl of melon or seasonal fruit salad. The little sugar plums provide a beautiful sharp burst of sweet and tart, and when you get a bite with both fresh corn and almost melty, jammy plum, it's like summer exploded in your mouth. Really, I'm not exaggerating. Ok, I might be just a little, but that's ok. These muffins were awesome and you should try them while the plums and corn are still around.

If I had one of two of these little beauties packed away for lunch, it just might ease the first-day-of-school-jitters. We'll see. I'll let you know.  Enjoy the summer while it lasts!

Double Corn Muffins with Sugar Plums
adapted from
makes 24 mini muffins

6 tablespoons of plain skim yogurt
1/4 cup of almond milk
1 egg
2 tablespoons of olive or canola oil
a tiny splash of almond extract
1 cup of whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup of yellow cornmeal
1/3 cup of natural cane sugar
1/2 tablespoon of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 cup of diced and pitted sugar plums
1 cob of corn, de-cobbed

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, milk, egg, oil and almond extract. Add the sugar and mix until well combined.

2. Sift in the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and soda, and salt. Fold until just combined. Try not to over mix.

3. Gently mix in the corn kernels and diced plums.  Spoon the batter into prepared muffin tins. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes (for the minis!) until you have nice, puffy golden, springy muffins, or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.

4. Enjoy!

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