Sourdough carrot cranberry muffins
A seemingly perfect baked good for the coldest of winter nights.
The other night, the Little One and I sat down to wait for the rain. It had only sprinkled a few times in our part of town, but the wind was driving yellow dust in front of it, tormenting the trees, knocking planters off balconies. Thunder growling in the distance, and daylight fading quickly. Tension in the air. The world was waiting for release.
And it came. Finally, real, soaking rain beating down. We smiled and breathed out. How wonderful to be indoors when it’s cold and wet outside. I was glad I’d brought my tender nasturtiums in; they wouldn’t have survived on the porch.
There’s something about cold weather that makes me want to bake. Probably because turning the oven on heats the apartment up – but the tantalizing smell of freshly baked goods may have something to do with it. I’ve been baking sourdough. I made sourdough croissants. Then an experimental sourdough loaf with a cup of spelt flour in it. (It came out too moist and heavy for my taste.)
From my file of sourdough recipes, I pulled out one for muffins. Hmm... I hadn’t made sourdough muffins yet. And they turned out surprisingly easy. I had thought that they would need rising time, but blending acidic sourdough and a little baking soda makes muffin magic – all you need to do is mix everything up and pop the filled tin into a hot oven.
- 1 carrot, grated (1/2 cup, although if your grated carrot amounts to a little more, use it all)
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1 cup refreshed starter
- 1 cup flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 425° F (220° C).
Mix the grated carrot and the cranberries. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda and sugar. Add the carrot/cranberries and stir well.
In a larger bowl, combine the starter, egg, oil and vanilla. Mix well and add the flour/carrot-cranberry mix. Mix to just combine everything – don’t over-mix or you will get tough muffins.
Fill your muffin molds to just under the top.
Bake for 25 minutes. Let the muffins sit in their tin for 5 minutes, then remove them and let them cool down on a rack.