Rasmus’ lovely aunt has been visiting us from Denmark over the weekend, and it’s been nice having another Danish person to practise with. She’s been the perfect visitor too, taking herself of to explore the city with her backpack, map and poncho (it poured with rain on Friday) and bringing me a fantastic book of Danish cake and dessert recipes. The photos are tantalisingly good and I’m looking forward to trying them out. (Rasmus also has strong opinions on which ones I should make first…!)
In the good-hostess manner I was brought up in, I really wanted to bake something good for our visitor, but she is lactose intolerant, which presents a bit of a challenge when glancing through my binders of recipes chock full of butter, cream and milk.
I found in an old well-used muffin recipe book, a recipe for orange muffins, that used orange juice instead of the normal milk, and I could substitute sunflower oil for the regular butter. Muffins are so so easy to make, and so quick (take me no longer than 40 minutes from start to delicious finish) that they are a guests-coming staple. This slim little book I have is written by the mother of a woman I knew vaguely at university, and I’ve made my way through most of the recipes by now.
They taste as good as they look! I was worried they wouldn’t rise as much as muffins made with milk but they did just fine. I had some soft nectarines in need of using up so I chopped one of those up into small pieces and added it to the mix, together with a tablespoon of poppy seeds.
And the biggest proof of all? Rasmus had a bite of mine, then asked for a whole one, then said twice that they are really good. We all know (by now, because I mention it, well, a lot) that he’s not one to typically take seconds of cake, so you can be sure that these are good.
So even if you don’t have any lactose-intolerant friends or relatives popping by soon, these should be on your “bake soon” list.
Orange Nectarine Muffins
Adapted from “Fast & Fantastic Muffins” by Susan Reimer
What you need:
10oz / 280g plain flour
1.5 teaspoons baking powder
0.5 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
0.5 teaspoons salt
4 oz / 110g fine white sugar
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
180ml orange juice (with water added to make a total of 240ml)
90ml vegetable oil
1 ripe nectarine, peeled and chopped into small pieces
What you do
Preheat oven to 400f / 200c / GM6
In a large bowl, sift together all dry ingredients.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg with a fork. Add the orange juice (plus water), oil and nectarine.
Pour all of the wet ingredients into the dry. Stir until just combined (don’t over mix).
Spoon the mixture into muffins tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the tops are lightly browned and spring back when pressed gently.
Eat and enjoy!!