07 May 2012

The Redeemers (with Lemon Zest)

This weekend I made cinnamon rolls for the first time. Benny was so excited to make them with me. I used a recipe from a friend and assumed that they would be perfect. They weren't. They were so bad Nate asked me to throw them out a day after I made them. I was a little hurt until I tried to eat one. It was like eating a rock. Seven cups of flour wasted.

I'm not much of a baker. I tend to cook more. But after having an outstanding lemon poppy seed cupcake during a family bike ride on Saturday and following it up with a lemon poppy seed pancake at breakfast on Sunday, I had lemon poppy seeds on the brain, so to speak. Wonder if it was the opium...

I found this recipe at the Brown Eyed Baker. Overall, it was good. There wasn't nearly enough liquid though, so I threw in some milk (about 1/2 cup) at the very end. They are definitely more muffin-y than cupcake-y. I think they would be fantastic with a little sour cream frosting, but I just didn't have the time to throw that together today.

The Redeemers (adapted a bit from the Brown Eyed Baker)

2/3 cup sugar
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon (throw in zest from 2 lemons - 1 isn't enough)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/4-1/2 cup milk if the batter is too dry
2 tablespoons poppy seeds

1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter or spray the 12 molds in a regular-size muffin pan or fit the molds with paper muffin cups.

2. In a large bowl, rub the sugar and lemon zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and the fragrance of lemon strong. Whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large glass measuring cup or another bowl, whisk the sour cream, eggs, vanilla, lemon juice and melted butter together until well blended. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and, with the whisk or a rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. Don’t worry about being thorough – a few lumps are better than over mixing the batter. Stir in the poppy seeds. Divide the batter evenly among the muffins cups.

3. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a thin knife inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes before carefully removing each muffin from its mold. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature.

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