Today is the first day of Şeker Bayramı, the ‘sugar feast’ which follows the holy month of Ramazan, when Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. Today will be a day of family celebrations with everyone contributing special dishes and plenty of sweet treats for the children.
I’ve baked chocolate chip muffins – mini versions to offer to children who are going door to door looking for sweet gifts, and normal-sized treats for our friend the almond seller in town and for Zerrin, our lovely housekeeper who helps us with our rental cottage in the next village. Obviously one or two may have to be sampled for quality control purposes, but we are having a 5:2 day today, so that will have to wait until tomorrow. (*brushes away incriminating chocolate crumbs from keyboard*)
These are incredibly easy to make and quick to bake. You literally stir together some dry ingredients, whisk together some milk, yoghurt, oil and an egg, then introduce the wet mix to the dry mix, give it a stir, and it’s ready.
The combination of dark cocoa and chocolate chips gives a lovely gooey, intensely chocolatey flavour, and the cinnamon adds just a hint of spice and warmth.
This recipe made 12 bite-sized mini versions and 10 normal muffins. It would make 12 normal sized muffins.
Double chocolate & cinnamon muffins
You will need a 12-cup muffin tin, lined with paper muffin cases
Pre-heat the oven to 190C.
250g self-raising flour
50g unsweetened cocoa powder (not drinking chocolate)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
A couple of handfuls of chocolate chips – any sort
80ml plain yoghurt
125ml vegetable oil (use something like sunflower or canola, not olive oil)
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar and cinnamon – give it all a good stir around to disperse any lumps and ensure it is evenly mixed. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Put the milk, yoghurt and oil into a measuring jug and add the egg. Whisk until well combined and smooth.
Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the milk/egg mix. Give everything a good stir with a wooden spoon until just combined – don’t be tempted to over-mix or your muffins will be tough. It doesn’t matter if it looks a bit lumpy.
Spoon the mix into the muffin cases – one of those spring action ice cream scoops is the best tool for the job (and the perfect size).
Bake for around 25 minutes until the muffins are well risen and firm to the touch. You may need to turn the tray around half way through, if one side is browning more than the other.
Leave to cool completely before scoffing the lot. Sorry, I meant before storing in an airtight container – they are even better the next day.