Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Mini Butternut Spice Muffins

These little muffins have been popping up all over in the past few weeks. I think I can make them with my eyes closed now. I have served them at both Supperclub nights, with an array of other little puddings alongside them such as tiny boozy Campari jellies and Chocolate and Chestnut pots... Then when The Journal got in touch to say they would like me to put together some Christmas canapés for their next edition of Taste I thought they would be perfect as a tiny sweet canapé.

 
I created four different canapés for the article, a chicory leaf cup with Stilton, toasted walnuts and honey, a mackerel and horseradish pate, a parma ham and chestnut pastry roll and these little fellas. So even though it was early November I was up in the loft looking out the Christmas decorations and setting my dining table with a Christmas party scene, ready for the photographer on a Sunday afternoon, it all felt a little bit surreal! The photos all looked lovely, much better than mine, and you can see the full article and all the recipes here.

I fed the photographer as many as I could, but then owing to the fact that it wasn't Christmas and there was no actual party happening TLI and were left staring at about 80 tiny bite size pieces of food... We made a little dent in them, but ended up taking the rest to work, as much as I love canapés it was just too much, even for me...

 
So to start preheat the oven to 200°C degrees and grease your mini muffin tin with a little butter. Then peel and chop half a butternut squash into chunks and put it in to roast for about 15 minutes or until its soft, it doesn’t need any oil or anything on it. You can also use pumpkin or sweet potato too, I've used an onion squash also which was lovely...
  
This makes about 24 mini muffins or 12 large ones, I prefer the tiny cute ones. Next mix together 125g of plain flour, 110g of sugar, 2 teaspoons of baking powder, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, ½ a teaspoon of ginger, ½ a teaspoon of nutmeg and ½ a teaspoon of salt. Cut 50g of room temperature butter into small pieces then mix it through the flour and spice mix with your fingers until it's like breadcrumbs.

 
When the butternut squash is done mash it with a fork and allow it to cool. Then in a separate bowl, mix together the squash, 120ml of evaporated milk and 1 beaten egg. Pour the squash mixture into the flour mixture and add a handful of raisins, then fold gently until mixture is just combined. Pour the mix into the greased muffin tins, about half 2/3 full into each. Then sprinkle the tops with a mix of cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg. Then bake for about 15 minutes, until golden.
The spices are delicious in the warm little butternut buns, sweet bites of raisins and a crunchy sugary spice top make them my favourite little pudding at the moment.

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