A few weeks back I had my first swim since Sylvia was born. I’ve missed swimming. I love the smell of chlorine. I love being in the water. And I realised I have come to love the peaceful time while tootling up and down the lap lanes when I can think about recipes.
During this swim I thought about pumpkin and goats cheese muffins. I have not been a big fan of goats cheese (ever since encountering some distastefully strong goats cheese in a café some years back). Then my mum recently brought me some delicious goats cheese that I used to top my mushroom and lentil ragout.
I envisioned chunky savoury muffins with fresh herbs from the garden. Almost a meal in themselves. Just like the ones at Arcadia Café in Gertrude Street Fitzroy. I thought the web would be littered with this sort of recipe but I couldn’t find any such thing. All the pumpkin muffin recipes I came across were sweet. So I looked at some recipes and cobbled together the muffins I had dreamt of.
I love the depth of flavours that roasting imparts to pumpkin (and all vegetables). On the day before baking my muffins, I roasted the pumpkin with seasoning and olive oil for 30 minutes at 200 C and left it in the oven while it cooled. The pumpkin was stirred into the muffin batter in chunks.
I baked in a rush to make the muffins before feeding Sylvia. In my hurry I used white flour instead of the wholemeal flour I had intended and I forgot to add oil. So I found the mixture a little stiff and just added a bit more milk. I was surprised at how soft and moist they were without oil. Everything tastes fantastic straight out of the oven but they also tasted great cold the next day.
E told me the muffins were too wet with pumpkin chunks. He would only eat them warm out of the oven or heated up in the microwave. I thought the pumpkin imparted a wonderful flavour to the muffins. We both enjoyed them as an accompaniment to broccoli soup. In fact, I can recommend them for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Pumpkin and Goats Cheese Muffins
Makes 9-10 muffins
2 cups self raising flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
1¼ cup milk*
8 semi-sundried tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
120g goats cheese, chopped
⅓ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 heaped cup of roast pumpkin cubes
*Or you can substitute ¼ cup oil for ¼ cup of milk which was what I originally intended.
Place paper muffin cups in a muffin tray. Preheat oven to 200 C. Lightly mix all ingredients in a medium-large bowl, except the flour. Gently stir in the flour till it is just combined. Spoon into muffin cups and bake for 25 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
On the stereo:
Legend and Lore: Dark Folklore and European Myths - Various Artists