Chocolate Chip Muffins.

This is one of my favourite recipes as it is both simple and quick but super delicious! My secret is simple – I just add lots and LOTS of chocolate chips! If you always sometimes have the need for chocolate cake, then this recipe is for you! 

choc muffins 1 (2)

Ingredients. 

  • 6oz caster sugar
  • 6oz butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 6oz self raising flour
  • 1/2tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g chocolate chips

Method. 

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees/180 fan/gas 6. Place paper muffin cases into a 12 hole muffin tray.

Mix together the butter and sugar until the mixture turns pale – this can be done with a wooden spoon but a mixer will make this quicker (and easier on your arms!). Beat in the eggs and vanilla really well (the mixture may look ‘curdled’ at this point but the flour will sort this out). Mix in the flour until combined (go easy with the mixing at this point) and then stir in the chocolate.

Spoon into the cupcake cases and bake for 15-20 minutes until brown on top and middle cakes in the tray are ‘springy’ to the touch. Check the muffins after 15 minutes and rotate the tray if necessary so they brown evenly.

These are great eaten warm but if you don’t manage to eat the whole tray warm from the oven (!) then 10 seconds in the microwave is enough to just melt the chocolate chips to make this delicious snack even better!

Makes 12 muffins. 

Yorkshire puddings… with a twist.

I started to add food colouring to Yorkshire puddings in a bid to make them more exciting to my two boys (aged 6 and 8 years old) but I just loved how they came out! Often a generic brown on the outside it is only when you cut them open that they show off their colour inside. It makes a mundane Toad in the Hole much more fun and not only that – yorkshire puddings are super easy to make too!

20130815-110701.jpg20130815-112130.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients

olive oil
3oz plain flour
1 egg
milk

Method

Preheat the oven to 200/gas 6. As the oven is warming, dribble into 6-hole muffin tin a very thin layer of olive oil (enough to cover the bottom of each muffin hole). Put this in the oven to heat as you make the mixture.

In a mixing bowl, measure the flour and add the egg and the food colouring (a couple of drops of liquid colour or a pea size amount of the colouring paste). Mix together carefully and add milk a little at a time (this will help you avoid lumps). Once your flour is combined, add enough milk to make a batter that is similar to pancakes (somewhere between thick and runny) – you don’t have to be entirely accurate – with 2 hungry boys, I always seem to be making dinner in a rush and never have time to measure the milk properly and it always turns out fine.

You can use an electric mixer for this or just some elbow grease and a spoon and if you do get lumps, either whisk a bit more or use a sieve!

Take the muffin tray out of the oven (be careful the oil in the tray will be VERY hot) and pour into the muffin holes the mixture. It will look odd at this point as the oil will sit almost on top of the mixture. Pop the tray back into the oven for 15-20 minutes.

Makes 6 individual Yorkshire puddings.

Tips
– DO NOT open the oven door until at least 15 minutes have passed! The puddings need the hot oven to rise up and will deflate into a soggy mess if the oven if opened too soon!
– If you want purple puddings use more colouring than you think – too little and it becomes a weird grey colour.
– A striking yellow is quite difficult to achieve as the puddings are a pale yellow to start with so for a first attempt, try a strong colour like blue or green to avoid disappointment.
– I prefer the food colouring pastes as they are easier to control and I like the gel colours the least (you need to use a lot for a strong colour and that makes them expensive).
– Keep food colouring away from your hands as it can stain for hours!
– If you are making them for the first time for your kids, don’t tell them first – their expression is priceless!

As an aside… this is the same recipe for simple crepes (just fry the batter in a well oiled frying pan)

… you can also colour these too.

20130815-112908.jpg