Archives for category: breakfast

I’ve made some recent discoveries.

1. Trader Joe’s frozen vegetarian meatballs are delicious. I’m one of those vegetarians that other vegetarians are talking about when they say, it’s a shame that people eat so much fake meat. Obviously I’m on board with real foods. But I also love tofurkey deli slices, and these meatballs. I just ate them in a lunchtime sub, and they’d be great on a platter of plain old spaghetti with jar sauce.

2. Summery cocktails are refreshing in February too. A Campari spritz I made up last night: 1.5 oz. Campari, 1.5 oz. fresh orange juice, 1 oz. sweet vermouth, over ice, topped with soda water. Really mild, both in terms of booze and bitterness, and shockingly red.

I’ve got another quick bread on the docket. The first time I made this it was gone in a day. The next one lasted longer, but that’s just because two people can eat only so much quick bread.

nuts and seeds

mix the dry ingredients

I’m not a sesame-obsessed person, but recently I’ve grown more interested in how it might play on the sweet side of the arena rather than the savory. Especially when combined with other nuts, it brings this rich almost bitter quality to an otherwise mundane bread.

drip glaze

Toasted with butter is the best way to eat it.

sliced bread

Orange Sesame Bread

1/3 C coconut oil, melted
1/2 C brown sugar
2 T flax meal
1/4 C plus 2 T water
1 T orange zest
1 T vanilla extract
1 C soy/almond milk
1 t apple cider vinegar

1/2 C golden raisins, soaked in boiling water for 10 min. and drained
2/3 C toasted nut pieces (walnut was best, cashews very good)
1/2 C toasted sesame seeds, divided (reserve 1 T)
1 C all-purpose flour
1/2 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C spelt flour
1 t baking soda
2 t baking powder
1 t kosher salt
1/4 t cinnamon
1 t ground cardamom

1/3 C powdered sugar
2 t orange juice

Grease and flour a 4×8 loaf pan and preheat the oven to 350.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the first eight ingredients, the wet ones. In a separate, large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients, the raisins, the walnuts, and all but one tablespoon of the sesame seeds. Using a plastic spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the dry and stir just until there are no flour clumps remaining. Go slowly and avoid beating the batter. Spread the batter into the loaf pan.

Bake 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the bread comes out clean (45 minutes every time for me). Cool on a rack in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove the loaf and let it cool entirely on the rack.

Whisk together the powdered sugar, orange juice, and reserved sesame seeds, adding a little more juice if necessary to achieve a drizzly glaze. Once the bread is completely cooled, drizzle the glaze over it. Slice the bread and serve.

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Susan, the newer employee at Amber Waves, shared this recipe with me. It’s chewy, slightly sweet, practically fat free, and as Sue promised, absolutely delicious.

sliced

Old-Fashioned Date Nut Bread

1 C cut-up dates (I use Medjool, that’s what we sell, and they make a world of difference. One 1/2 lb. pkg is all you need, with a few left over!)
1 t baking soda
1 C hot water (I boil it)

1 egg (use a flax or chia egg if you’re vegan)
2/3 C sugar
1 t vanilla
1/2 t salt
1 T melted butter or oil
1 3/4 C flour (I used organic white to stay traditional, but I’m going for half whole wheat next time)
1/2 C chopped walnuts

Set oven to 350 degrees.

Place chopped dates in a bowl, sprinkle baking soda over, add hot water, stir a little, and let sit while you gather the rest of the ingredients.

Beat egg and sugar, butter, vanilla and salt. Add flour alternately with date mixture, adding nuts in last flour addition. I do this in two steps, flour-date, flour-nuts-date.

Bake in an oiled loaf pan 50-60 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in the pan, then cool to room temperature on a rack – makes slicing easier.

Great with cream cheese, but wonderful just toasted a bit all by itself.

(Teacups are from Fortnum & Mason, Piccadilly, London, where I vacationed with my cousin Beth in September. I didn’t buy any.)teacups for fun

The CSA boxes come from Davis and end up three blocks from me in Oakland, up a hill whose very top is graced by highway 580. The boxes are in the back of the driveway, under an old carport, and they share the space with abandoned kids’ toys and loose Trader Joe’s paper bags. Tick your name off the list, take your stash. The waxed cardboard box gets strapped to my bike rack and it’s almost as tall as the seat, which means I can feel it bouncing under me as we bomb down the three blocks back to my apartment.

Lots of tomatoes these days. Lots of tomato breakfast sandwiches.

My mom used to make these with cheese instead of sausage. They will burn your mouth.


Open-faced Breakfast Sandwiches with Cashew Sausage
serves 2

2 English muffins
one small tomato, sliced
2 slices sweet or red onion
1/3 to 1/2 C sausage (recipe below)
olive oil, salt, and pepper

Preheat the oven to 450. Toast the English muffins. Spread each half with about 1 1/2 T sausage mixture. Top each with a slice or two of tomato, and some onion filigree. Transfer the muffins to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.

Bake for 5 minutes, then turn on the broiler for 1 minute. Serve immediately; when they’re hot you’ll need a fork and knife, but then you can use your hands.

Cashew-tempeh Sausage
inspired by Julia
looks time-consuming, but it’s not
makes about 1 C

4 oz. tempeh, cubed
1/2 C raw cashew pieces
1 T sausage seasoning
1/4 t table salt
1 T olive oil
1 C water

Sausage seasoning:

2 t red pepper flakes
1/2 t ground black pepper
4 t ground sage
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1 t dried thyme
4 t fennel seeds
1 t garlic powder

Make the sausage seasoning; you’ll only need a tablespoon now but you’ll enjoy having it on hand! Make tempeh gravy with it.

In a food processor, pulse the tempeh, cashews, seasoning, and salt together until the mix is crumbly. (Of course you can chop these by hand and stir in the seasoning.) Heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat and saute the sausage for 8 or so minutes, until it begins to get toasty and darker brown. Add the water and simmer until most of the water is evaporated–you want the mix to be spreadable so don’t let all the water escape! Transfer to a bowl, and spread away.

My week ends on Thursday, so Fridays are often sacrificed in the name of pleasure. I managed to do a little work a couple Fridays ago, over an egg sandwich at Curious Palate, and it was actually exciting work, research I find invigorating and new and not annoying like some other dissertation chapters I can think of. But my excitement gets diffuse, fast: on my walk home I was no longer thinking about generations of male Wordsworths, but rather muffins, ways to trick out my bike, how might I learn the bass and find a band that wants a backup singer, can I applique that embroidered flower onto something rad, what dipping sauce do I want on my yuca tortillas. I didn’t work on Wordsworth for the rest of the day.

Instead I went out and bought medjool dates.

After breakfast, as is often the case, I wanted more to eat. Some people need a little sweet to end a meal; I guess that’s the case with me but if I have the sweet then I want the savory again and there’s no end in sight. So I walked home daydreaming about crumb cake muffins, with crumbs on top and hidden inside, pieces of date in there like little candy bits and some lemon zest to keep the whole thing just this side of cloying.

I made these muffins vegan. It’s so easy with a quickbread–chia egg, almond milk and apple cider vinegar, oil–and it meant I could share them with Justin, who liked these as much as I did with a pat of Earth Balance. The best way to eat these is out of the oven, of course–but that state can be replicated. Microwave a muffin for 20 seconds, pop it in a 350 oven for 5 minutes, eat.

Cinnamon Crumb Muffins with Medjool Dates and Lemon Icing
makes 12

Wet:
1 T chia seeds
3 T water
1 C almond milk
1 t apple cider vinegar
1/4 C oil (I use canola)
1/2 t lemon zest

Dry:
1 C whole-wheat flour
1 C white whole-wheat flour
1/4 C sugar
3 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t table salt
1 C medjool date pieces

Crumb:
1/2 C pecan halves
1/4 C AP flour
1/4 C brown sugar
1 t cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of salt
3 T coconut oil (in its hardened state)

Icing:
3/4 C powdered sugar
enough lemon juice to make an icing (I used about 3 t; start with 2 and add more slowly until the icing is drippy)

Preheat the oven to 375. Grease your muffin tin (coconut oil works great, or some spray oil).

Stir together the chia seeds and water. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the almond milk and vinegar. Add the oil, zest, and the chia seeds when they’ve formed a gel. Whisk together.

A food processor is great for the crumb topping, but if you don’t have one it’s not a big deal. Dump the pecans into the processor and pulse until they’re finely chopped. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until a sandy mixture forms. You can do all this with a cutting board, knife, bowl, and fork.

In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients, including the dates. Dump in the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.

Scoop one small spoonful of batter into each of the 12 muffin cups. Spread it out using a spoon so that the batter covers the bottom of the tin. Then add a layer of crumb topping on top of the batter–a scant tablespoon per cup. Then divvy up the rest of the batter between the muffin cups. Scatter another scant tablespoon of crumb topping on each muffin.

Stash in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes, then dig out the muffins and let them sit on the rack. When they’re completely cool, drizzle with the lemon icing.

I made these wonderful muffins 3 times over the holidays, but I didn’t have the time to post the recipe! Amber Waves had an overabundance of great squashes at Thanksgiving, both acorn and buttercup. The acorn were the usual light-colored flesh, but very sweet, and the buttercup, well, they were the best I’d ever eaten. As demand waned after Thanksgiving, I took home the leftovers and roasted them cut side down in a 400 degree oven till they were soft, about 40 minutes. When they were cool enough to handle, I scooped the flesh, packed and froze a few quarts, and put the rest in the fridge. Then I went online and looked for a recipe for pumpkin muffins. Epicurious had a few, Martha had one or two laden with sour cream and butter, so I looked at a site my daughter had recommended: Smitten Kitchen.

It seems this person makes recipes from all over the planet, this one comes from the American Club in Kohler, Wisconsin, via Gourmet Magazine! It had way too much sugar, especially considering the sweetness of the squash, so I cut back by 3/4 C and added pecans and dried cranberries.

Pumpkin Muffins with Pecans and Dried Cranberries
adapted from Smitten Kitchen
makes 12 petite muffins

1 1/2 C all purpose flour (I used 1/2 C. whole wheat flour and 1 C white)
1 t baking powder
1 C canned pumpkin (or your best leftover squash)
1/3 C vegetable oil (I used coconut)
2 large eggs
1 t pumpkin pie spice (or 1 t cinnamon, 1/2 t ginger & 1/8 t cloves)
1/2 – 3/4 C sugar (for cupcake-sweet muffins, use 1 1/4 C)
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1/2 C chopped pecans
1/2 C dried cranberries

1 t cinnamon
1 T sugar

Heat oven to 350, butter or Pam your muffin pan.

Stir together pumpkin, oil (I heat the coconut oil so it’s liquid), eggs, and sugar till smooth.

Whisk the flour, baking powder, soda, salt and spices.

Mix the cinnamon with the sugar for topping the muffins.

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry, mix till just moist, and add the nuts and cranberries. Stir only till nicely distributed, and fill muffin cups about 3/4 full. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and bake 25 – 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Cool in pan for 5 minutes, and transfer muffins to a rack to cool, if you can wait that long!

I may have mentioned my obsession with these oatmeal pancakes. I mention them too often, considering that I have nothing really to say about them other than I LOVE THEM. But I’ve had no modifications to suggest or anything–they’re great as is.

But I didn’t have any oats one morning. I did have granola–experimental granola that I didn’t really love. We love restrictions, however, and so I made vegan granola pancakes.

I had never made vegan pancakes, but as with most of my sweet forays into the eggless dairyless world, I found that a flax egg is all you need to achieve greatness. I like almond milk best for baking–less overt flavor than soy–and I added a teaspoon of vinegar in order to replicate the tang of buttermilk. The granola needs to be pulverized a bit before you toss it in the batter, otherwise I suspect you’ll be waiting a long time for it to soak up the liquid. I also highly recommend some sort of oil spray for the pan: these pancakes are absorbent, and I find that canola spray or Pam really hits the spot between not-sticking and deep-frying. Then a little extra sprinkle of granola bits on the pancake tops as they cook, and as much warm maple syrup as you can handle.

Granola Pancakes
makes 22 3-inch pancakes (serves 3ish…I usually eat 8 but hey now before you judge these are small pancakes)

1 1/2 C granola, divided
1 1/4 C almond milk
1 t apple cider vinegar
1 T sugar
1 flax egg (1 T flax meal mixed with 3 T water)
2 T canola oil, plus more for the frypan
1 t vanilla extract
1/2 C AP flour
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/4 t kosher salt

Working in 1/3 C batches, bash up 1 C of the granola in a mortar and pestle. You want it to be relatively homogenous. A Cuisinart would probably work great as well. Set aside the other 1/2 C granola.

In a large bowl, whisk together the almond milk, vinegar, sugar, and granola. Once the flax egg has become viscous (5-10 minutes or so), whisk it in along with the canola oil and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, leavening, and salt. Add to the wet bowl and stir to combine.

Set aside for 2 hours or so, or overnight.

Stick a sheetpan in the oven and preheat it to 250. Heat a frypan over medium heat. Spray with canola oil or Pam–these cakes will absorb whatever fat you use so I find the spray oil very helpful. Ladle the batter into the pan, about 2 T per pancake (I use a quarter-cup scoop, and get two cakes out of it). Now is the time for that extra 1/2 C of granola. Sprinkle a little over each cake. When the bottoms are golden brown (2 minutes or so), spray the tops with the canola oil and flip the cakes. Two more minutes, then transfer to the baking sheet in the oven. Repeat with the remaining batter. Serve with maple syrup.

P.S. These freeze like a dream. Lay them out in a single layer on a sheetpan lined with plastic wrap. Freeze. Then remove them from the sheetpan and stick them in a bag. Reheat in the oven at 350 until warm and crisp.

When I visited my cousin last week, I made some zucchini bread from an internet recipe and it was quite sweet, crunchy on the outside and like pound cake inside. Not bad, but I wanted something more nutritious and less sweet.

I reviewed my old cookbooks, and found one from New Recipes from Moosewood using 1/2 the sugar. I tinkered with it a bit, adding ginger and eliminating raisins and making muffins instead of bread.

Zucchini Ginger Muffins
adapted from New Recipes from Moosewood
makes 12 small muffins

1/2 C vegetable oil
1/2 C brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 t vanilla
1 C grated zucchini
3/4 C white flour
3/4 C whole wheat flour
1 t ground ginger
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t salt
1/2 t baking powder
1/4 t baking soda
1/4 C chopped walnuts
1/4 C chopped candied ginger

Preheat oven to 350. Oil or Pam 12 cup muffin tin.

Combine oil, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla and zucchini. Mix well. In a separate bowl whisk flours, spices, baking powders and salt. Stir dry ingredients into wet ones until just mixed. Fold in walnuts and candied ginger. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, to get 12 you need to be a little skimpy. Bake 20 minutes or until tops spring back when you touch them and are nicely browned.

Acceptable alternate spellings for “oaten” include “oat ‘n’…” (that’s for my dad).

I’ve mentioned my obsession with oat cakes before. So nourishing. So imaginary. As I sat in a focus group today, earning cash as I dreamed away about things to eat when I was released, I fell upon these pancakes, which I respect so well that I can offer no emendations to the recipe. Really, they’re perfect.

But if, in the middle of summer, you find yourself with an extra cob of corn (or some frozen kernels in the freezer, which is pretty much a perpetual state with me), you should make these. I feel strongly about these pancakes because they are based on a a masterful pancake recipe–the thinner, chewy kind rather than the dense cakey ones–and include corn. We loves corn. But I feel even more strongly about the scented honey. This is the first day it occurred to me to throw stuff into warm honey.

The result is this totally sophisticated syrup that you made by zapping some honey in the microwave and dumping in a few pinches of sweet aromatics. And it turns humble corn cakes into the neatest thing you could possible make for brunch. Or, if you’re me, dinner. Maybe you can imagine making them without sugar, a chopped scallion thrown in and a quarter cup of grated cheddar, some smoked salmon draped on top once the cakes are fried and crispy. I don’t know how to make blinis so this seems like a pretty sweet deal.

Oaten Corn Cakes with Vanilla-Ginger Scented Honey
adapted from Bon Appetit
makes 20 3-inch pancakes

For reference, I just ate 8. Plan accordingly. The original recipe is twice as big, and you should double my recipe if you’re cooking for more than 1 or 2 people.

Also note: the batter needs to stand a bit (even overnight if you’ve got it) before you can make the cakes!

1 C rolled oats
1/4 C AP flour
3/4 C corn kernels (frozen or fresh), divided
1 T sugar
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t kosher salt
1/2 C plain yogurt
1 C water
1 egg
2 T melted butter, plus more for brushing the skillet
1/2 t vanilla extract

Scented Honey (may make a little extra–please, just put it in your tea and report back)
1 C delicious honey
1/4 t fresh grated ginger
the scrapings of 1 vanilla pod

For the pancakes, whisk together the first 7 ingredients in a large bowl. Puree together the 1 C water with 1/4 C of the corn. In a small bowl, whisk together the corn water with the yogurt, egg, butter, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir together with a big spoon. Let batter stand an hour to thicken a bit (the oats absorb liquid in a very pleasing way).

In a small saucepan, heat up the honey over low heat. Add the ginger and vanilla goo and whisk to combine. Set aside.

Stick a plate into an oven preheated to 250. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat and brush with melted butter. (I like a medium skillet because it heats evenly on my stove and forces me to make cute small pancakes.) With a big serving spoon, ladle batter into the skillet (each pancake will require about 2T or so and you’ll make 4 per batch). Cook until the bottoms are golden and bubbles form on top, around 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook for another minute or two. Transfer the pancakes to the plate in the oven and keep going until you have no batter left, brushing the skillet with butter between batches.

Reheat the honey if it’s gotten too sticky for drizzling. Serve the pancakes with a nice spoonful or two of honey (they need less sweetener than other pancakes, and I say this as a honey/maple syrup guzzler).

These rolls are like subtle donuts.

A sticky orange glaze on a barely sweet knot of dough–the perfect treat for breakfast, or afternoon snack.

Glenn thinks they taste like breakfast in Italy, but I suspect the recipe is severely American. The original is scrawled on an index card I got from my aunt Ann’s recipe box–one of her grandmother’s specialties. And when I told my mom I was making them, she said HER grandmother had a recipe for orange rolls if I didn’t like this one. Orange rolls from all the great-grandfolk.

During the raid of Ann’s recipe box, we were talking about the appearance of shortening in recipes of a certain vintage–I always assumed shortening meant Crisco, but it apparently indicates any sort of fat–butter, margarine, lard. And we were discussing what an odd word that was for fat–shortening–and the number of baked goods that have “short” in them–short bread, short cake, short crust. And you know what? SHORT is an archaic word for “crumbly”–specifically, made crumbly by the addition of fat! I love it. This is like the perfect storm for me–archaic English and baked goods.

Glazed Orange Rolls
makes 16 big rolls

1 C whole milk
1/2 C shortening (I used half butter and half Smart Balance because it’s what my fridge had on offer)
1/2 C honey
1 t salt
2 packets yeast
1/4 C warm water
2 eggs
1/4 C orange juice
2 T orange zest
5 C white whole wheat flour, plus more for kneading (yes, go buy a sack of the King Arthur stuff)

Glaze:
1/4 C orange juice
2 t orange zest
2 C powdered sugar
2 pinches of salt

Scald the milk (the microwave is your friend) and in a large bowl whisk it into the shortening (in pieces), the honey, and the salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the yeast and the warm water. Add the yeast paste to the big bowl along with the eggs, OJ, and zest. Beat well. Add the flour and mix to a soft dough with a wooden spoon–it will be quite soft and don’t fret. Cover with a towel, and let the dough stand until it’s doubled in size.

Flour your kneading surface generously, and knead the dough for around 5 minutes, adding more flour as the dough gets sticky. Grease the large bowl and put the dough ball back in there. Cover with the towel, and let stand until it’s doubled in size (the recipe card says two hours; mine took under an hour because my apartment is HOT). Punch down the dough (the best part) and then let it stand for another 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400. Re-flour your surface and dump out the dough. You want to roll the dough into a rectangle, 10″x16″. It will be pliable at this point so you may not even need a rolling pin–I didn’t. I just pressed it out into a rectangle. Cut into 16 strips, 1 inch wide and 10 inches long. Knot each strip. This is not the big deal I expected. Ugly is fine–they’ll look good when they bake. And if you want them to look pretty, make one leg of the knot longer than the other, and tuck it around the roll once you’ve formed the knot.

Bake on parchment paper for 12 minutes at 400, and let the rolls cool on a rack. Whisk together the glaze ingredients. When the rolls are cool, dip the tops in the glaze and let the syrup run down the sides as it sets. You’ll have extra glaze just in case you like to have a little pool of it with your roll.

The best part? The recipe card ends with this instruction: “Brush icing on with pastry brush for an even glo.”

I watch a lot of tv. I watch a lot of food tv–often food tv that I don’t actually enjoy. For every episode of the Barefoot Contessa gaily mixing up two pounds of pre-shelled, pre-cooked lobster with a few handfuls of roquefort and a confit of hundred-dollar bills (I mock because I love), there’s an episode of Alton Brown insisting that he knows the best way to make the best version of whatever boring thing he’s making today (I mock because I don’t love). I know he has his devotees, but I am not one of them. He knows some perfectly valid ways of making some dishes that look perfectly fine–he also knows some weird, idiosyncratic ways of making somewhat bizarre dishes. Just like most cooks on earth.

Mostly, I feel there is no need for his brand of hegemony when it comes to something like a quick bread. His blueberry muffins, for instance: look at this iron fist. “Stir mixture for a count of 10. Add 1 cup blueberries to mixture and stir 3 more times.” You know, there are more important food-related choices we get to make than the number we count to while stirring our muffins. So I’m here with a little PSA: if you stir your muffins three more swirls than necessary, you will not ruin anything. You will not make them tough and intractable; you will not develop the gluten past the point of recognition. You will simply make delicious muffins.

Especially if you use this recipe, which many of my friends regard as one of the most brilliant items in my mom’s repertoire. It’s from an old Betty Crocker; I’m pretty sure the recipe was prefaced by some note about how it won “best muffins” at an Iowa State Fair. That seems totally plausible. These are excellent muffins and they have a crumb topping (crumb topping!). They won’t mind if you stir them to a count of 15, or until the flour is, you know, actually mixed into the batter. You can make them with fresh berries, or frozen. I used both today! A mix of fresh blueberries and frozen blackberries. No thawing necessary.

Blueberry Muffins
makes 12

Wet

1 C milk
1 egg
1/4 C mild oil (canola, grapeseed, whatever)
1/2 t vanilla extract

Dry

1 C white AP flour
1 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C sugar
3 t baking powder
1/2 t table salt
1 C frozen or fresh berries (blueberries or raspberries are great, as are strawberries if you cut them up a bit.)

Topping

3 T white AP flour
2 T brown sugar, packed
2 T cold butter
1 t cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 400.

Whisk together the wet ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients plus the berries. In a food processor, pulse together the topping ingredients until the butter is well-incorporated. I think you want to go beyond the pea-sized butter chunk stage here–I pulse until the mixture is almost uniform.

Pam up a muffin tin, or line the tin with paper liners (I can’t be bothered, so I just use Pam, which is really an amazing product and when you’re serious about stuff not sticking it’s worth using it, I think [and so does my mom, it’s official then]). Add the wet ingredients to the dry and fold together slowly until there are no hidden troughs of flour. Using a big spoon (or an appropriately-sized ice cream scoop, if you have one), fill the tins with the batter. Better to start by underfilling the muffin holes; it’s easier to add more than remove delicately. Then spoon the crumb topping over each muffin. There will be enough topping for you to blanket the muffin batter completely.

Stash in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until your trusty toothpick comes out clean. Cool for a few minutes in the tins, then dig out the muffins with a butter knife and serve. You can reheat these in the toaster oven, or split and crisp them in a fry pan with a little butter. They’ll keep a while in the fridge (up to a week, I’d say), much less time on your counter.