making baby-friendly muffins and cakes
”I haven’t got time for …” is the battle cry of many a new mum and where baking is concerned it’s certainly been mine (I’m not sure I still qualify as a new mum with E turning one soon but more on that later!). When E was 5 weeks old I baked 30 scones as a thank you for the midwives who looked after us in hospital. It proved to be an ardous task babywearing a sleeping boy on my front (for 2 hours I seem to recall) so you’ll understand why baking never made it back onto my ‘to do’ list.
All that has changed since discovering the wonderful Mamacook last month while searching for sugar free cake recipes. I wanted to do a trial run on a baby-friendly birthday cake for E and did so using Mamacooks sugar free carrot, sultana and apple cake recipe. Fruity, moist and lovely it was; pretty it wasn’t. Not for a special 1st birthday cake anyway (no offence intended Mamacook!) and as I would have negated all the no-sugar goodness by slapping a load of icing on top to decorate it I’ve decided to park that recipe for another day.
What I have been making repeatedly are Mamacooks mini muffins with feta cheese. I didn’t have any spinach the first time I tried this recipe so substituted grated courgette and used gluten-free flour. They were so quick to make and E enjoyed his first taste fresh from the oven while the cheese was still a little gooey. As you can imagine he suddenly became very popular with the cats!
So back to the muffins …I’ve made 2 other slight variations on the savoury muffin theme in preparation for E’s birthday party this week. Feta and spinach using wholemeal flour and feta and semi-dried tomatoes with plain flour (the beauty of this recipe is that just about any flour combination seems to work effortlessly with the moist egg/oil/milk combination).
to make feta mini-muffins (one pack of feta = double recipe)
what you need
100g frozen chopped spinach (or 1/2 grated courgette as in first picture or handful of chopped oven-dried tomatoes as above)
4 tbsp milk (works well with non-diary milk too)
100g Feta cheese
2 tbsp olive oil
150g self-raising flour
A few grindings of nutmeg
oil to grease pan (I used sillicone cup cake cases)
what you do
- Preheat the oven to 180°c / 350F (fan) – 200°C / 400F (conventional).
- Mamacook says leave the spinach to defrost or if you’re impatient, heat in the microwave gently until defrosted. I say if your freezer is bare grate a courgette/chop some fresh spinach/toss in some semi-dried tomatoes.
- Cut the feta into small (approx 0.5cm) cubes.
- Mix the eggs, milk, olive oil and cheese then mix in the chopped veg.
- Brush the cup cake cases or pan with oil
- Mix the wet mix into the flour and nutmeg. Mamacook says do so until *just* combined. The rule is with muffins that you don’t overmix. Spoon a desert spoonful into each hollow.
- Bake for 15-17 mins
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