Tuesday 4 January 2011

A New Year

Welcome to 2011! It seems as though the Christmas holidays went on forever...and while I really enjoyed the break (despite the snow scuppering our festive trip to Martha's Vineyard & Boston....gggrrrr!) it's very good to get back to normal!

My New Year Resolution for this blog, is to (try) and post everything I bake for our local coffeeshop. I deliver to them 6 days a week, something different each day except Sunday - so it's quite interesting. They are a wonderful customer, not least because they give me no order! I have supplied them for so long (over 6 years) that I know them and their regular customers really well and know what they like. So I get to try out lots of new recipes on some willing but critical guinea pigs! This has been invaluable while writing my cookbook, because it means that I can test many different recipes and get honest feedback - as opposed to that from family & friends who are naturally biased. These are members of the paying public, and they make it very clear if they don't like something ,or if they feel it could be improved - or if they love it! Wonderful feedback.

I've just returned from today's delivery (the first time they've been open since 24th December as they close over the holiday) So, being served at The Coffee Tree today:

Lemon Drizzle Cake (excuse the Christmas cake board - it was left over! And it's not Twelfth Night just yet...)

Fresh Blueberry & Lime Muffins. I wanted something zesty today, to counteract all that heavy, marzipanny, dried fruity indulgence that most people will have indulged in over the holidays. These are beautiful muffins and always work perfectly...

Makes 9 large muffins

Preheat oven to 200c & line 9 holes of a deep muffin pan with paper liners

300g self raising flour
150g caster sugar + 2 tbsp
200ml whole milk (preferably organic - I use Rachel's (naturally....!)
100ml sunflower oil (or you could use melted butter)
2 medium free-range eggs
150g fresh blueberries
zest & juice of 1 lime

Sift flour and sugar into a roomy bowl...add blueberries (I reserve 9 for decoration) and lime zest and mix with a fork to combine. Measure milk & oil into a mixing jug, break in the eggs and mix vigorously with a fork until the eggs are well beaten into the liquids. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and use the fork to combine them roughly...do not overmix or the muffins will be tough. The mixture should be lumpy & a few pockets of flour are fine.Spoon into the prepared pan and top each with a reserved blueberry if you like (I just like the way they 'pop' and the purple juice runs down the sides...but that's just me!)
Bake for 20 minutes (I rotate the pan after 10 minutes for even baking) They will be risen and brown on top when ready. Leave for a few minutes before removing from the tin and placing on a wire cooling rack - I put a sheet of foil underneath to catch the syrup drips from the finishing touches! In a small cup, combine a tbsp caster sugar with the lime juice and microwave on 'full' for 30 secs to dissolve. Brush each hot muffin with the syrup, which will be quickly absorbed. Sprinkle each with a little of the remaining tbsp sugar and eat while still a little warm if possible. Delicious!

Enjoy - as I hope the coffee shop customers are. Have a great day xo


  1. Don't those look wonderful! I wish I had a blueberry muffin right now, but ok when don't I! Medium eggs? Don't think I've ever seen that size. We have large and extra large here. Most cookbooks use large for baking. Is that equal to your medium?

    Gosh I can't wait to see what you post tomorrow!

  2. Yay! I love your new year's resolution! I am so happy to know that you will be posting pics of all your bakery creations. Your lemon drizzle cake & blueberry muffins look YUMMY! Wish I could have a muffin right now too. Would be great with my morning coffee. Looking forward to your posts Rachel. Sending you a great big hug!!! xoxo

  3. Oh, sweet Rachel! To have one of your delicious recipes is a wonderful gift!! I can't wait to bake the muffins, second only to sharing one of yours!! What a wonderful way to begin the new year...I will look forward to each post! Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Love & hugs, Sherry xx

  4. Oh my gosh Rachel you are making me soooo hungry, these all look amazing! Wish I could zip right over there and visit you and the coffee shop... smile..

    Have a blessed day!
    xoxo Gert

  5. Love your blog and will read it everyday. The pictures of the pastries are so beautiful. Thank you for sharing. . . .

  6. I'll have a blueberry muffin and a cup of English breakfast please, and a good old gossip in the corner to go with it! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


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