Friday, September 3, 2010

Coffee-Break Muffins

A lot of recipes call for espresso or coffee to give the baked goods a boost. So I grabbed some from the supermarket. The biggest irony of it all is I don't drink coffee. Nope, not a drop of it. I ended up interviewing my colleagues on the best coffee in their opinion. The supermarket store assistants must think I'm some sort of a looney, stalking the coffee section for almost an hour, scrutinizing all the fine print on the coffee can labels.

Tried this really easy muffin recipe from one of the baking books I got off Amazon. It was pretty much a flop when I first made it. Recipe states to use a cup of strong coffee, honestly I don't know how strong is strong and only used 2 tsp of coffee powder. The muffins ended up lacking the coffee punch. Guess I gotta start drinking a teeny weeny bit of some coffee if I want to make my baking even better. :( I also overfilled the muffin cups with batter and the muffins domed too much and cracked in the middle, resembling chinese steamed cakes. Not sexy at all. Mom had to lie to the guests, 'Hey look! My daughter made some hua kway for you guys!!' :D

Was kinda pissed off so I tried it again with stronger coffee and making sure I filled my muffin cups properly. So they turned out fine. This batch is slightly browner than my first 'floppy' ones as the instant coffee powder darkens it. Muffins are absolutely moist with crispy crust. Topped off with the unique combination of coffee with caramelised brown sugar and cinnamon, they make a perfect choice for a quick morning snack. They get more flavorful after they're cooled to room temperature, so I suggest patiently waiting for an hour or two even though some disappeared from my rack before that happens.Coffee-Break Muffins (adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Baking From My Home to Yours)
Book states it makes 12 muffins. 15 for me.

280g all purpose flour
67g white sugar
72g light brown sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp instant espresso powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
240ml strong coffee, cooled (5 tsp instant coffee powder to a cup of hot water)
113g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 200°C
2. Whisk together flour, sugar-s, baking powder, espresso powder, cinnamon and salt
3. In another bowl, whisk coffee, melted butter, egg and vanilla extract together until well combined
4. Pour the liquid mixture over dry ingredients, and gently stir to blend
5. Divide batter evenly over muffin cups
6. Bake for abt 20 mins and transfer pan to a cooling rack
7. Let muffins cool in rack for abt 5 mins before transferring them out

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