Sunshine, 21 degrees, my kind of spring day. Just a shame that we are both sporting ear/nose/throat/chest infections and are feeling way too feeble to do anything outdoors. This is what happens when you have a trip back to the UK – the place is clearly to be avoided on health grounds.
Anyway, this afternoon Linda and I are going to see our lovely hairdresser friend John, and we all know what that involves: yes, that would be cake.
Robin picked up a few fallers from underneath our lime tree a couple of days ago, so I thought I would make some lime drizzle muffins – easy to mix, quick to cook. While I was mixing them up, I had an inexplicable desire to make them green (I hadn’t thought of adding the rum at this point – the recipe was evolving as I went along – in a particularly good way when I arrived at the rum idea).
I had some natural green colouring in the cupboard from a cup-cake charity bake that I got involved in some time ago, so I fairly liberally sploshed a few spots into the jug with the milk and yoghurt. Hmmm, mint green, not quite the tropical hue I was seeking. But all was not lost, I had yellow colouring in the cupboard too – in it went and the mix went slightly more towards the colour I was hoping for – I added one of our local village eggs, which have bright orange yolks, and ‘Eureka’ we were there. Heaven knows what it will look like when it is cooked. Feel free to decide you do not want to try this at home and prefer to leave yours a natural muffin colour.
Plain lime muffins seemed a bit lacking in something, so I added a few blueberries from the stash I smuggled in from the UK last week. I hope you notice that I have cunningly chosen my muffin papers to match the lime and blueberry theme (not sure what’s got into me today – must be the antibiotics).
If you don’t want alcohol in your drizzle (remember it is in its raw state, so will count if you are driving), then just leave it out, though it really does taste delicious and two teaspoons is only a teensy weensy bit when it’s divided between 12 muffins. Any kind of rum will do – we happened to have Bacardi in the cupboard, but dark rum or golden rum would be perfect. It strikes me that these would probably be particularly good served alongside a well-mixed Planter’s Punch if you’re not in the mood for tea – in fact, that sounds like the perfect cure for our ailments. Roll on four o’clock, I say.
300g self-raising flour
Zest and juice of 2 limes (one is for the drizzle)
80g sugar + 2 extra tablespoons for the drizzle + a bit for sprinkling
60g butter or margarine, melted (or you could use sunflower oil)
A couple of handfuls of blueberries (frozen work best)
2 teaspoons rum
A few spots of lime green food colouring (optional)
You will need a 12-cup muffin tin, lined with paper cup cake cases
Put the sugar, flour and finely-grated zest of one of the limes into a large mixing bowl, stir briefly and make a well in the centre.
In a measuring jug, whisk together the milk, yoghurt, juice of the lime you have just zested, the melted butter or margarine and the egg. Add a few spots of the lime green food colouring, if using.
(I forgot to photograph those stages, but you can use your imagination).
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mix and stir with a spatula until just combined – it doesn’t need to be completely smooth, just make sure there are no big lumps of flour. The less you mix, the lighter the muffins will be.
Stir in the blueberries, saving a few for the top.
Spoon the mix into the muffin cases (a spring action ice cream scoop makes this job easy and is also a perfect measuring tool). Push a blueberry into the top of each muffin and then sprinkle generously with sugar.
Bake for 25 minutes, turning the tray around after 15 minutes if you notice one side is browning more quickly than the other. The muffins should be well risen and a deep golden, errrrr, green in my case, brown if you didn’t let fly with the colouring. Leave the muffins in the tin while you make the drizzle.
Mix together the zest and juice of the remaining lime, then add the rum and sugar. Stir very briefly and then spoon a little over each muffin – you are not looking for the sugar to dissolve, this will give the muffins a crunchy topping. Leave the muffins in the tin until completely cold.
Serve with tea, Mojitos or Planter’s Punch, whichever you think is most appropriate. (Your votes below please)