Tuesday, January 13, 2009

TWD: Savory Corn and Pepper Muffins

This week's project for "Tuesdays with Dorie" was Savory Corn and Pepper Muffins, chosen by Rebecca of Ezra Pound Cake. For the recipe, check out Rebecca's blog, or better yet, buy "Baking: From My Home to Yours" by the delightful Dorie Greenspan!


This turned into a bit of a "use it up" project. We didn't have a jalapeño pepper on hand, and the only sweet red pepper was chopped and frozen (though I'm sure that would have been fine). No fresh cilantro, either. I suppose I could have taken a quick drive up to the Mexican market in Sauk Prairie, and maybe even watched some bald eagles as well, but I didn't really feel like traveling on this cold Wisconsin day.

So I rummaged around to see what needed using up. The partly-used package of frozen corn held about 1/2 cup. OK, use that up. Leave out the red peppers because I didn't want to load these down with too much stuff. (Now that I've made them, I think they'd be great with lots of add-ins!) Here's about half a cup of grated cheddar cheese. All right, add that in too. How about 2 tablespoons of freeze-dried chives from Penzeys? I've been meaning to use those chives more often -- let's do it!

Other than that, I stayed with the recipe -- using 1 1/2 teaspoons of very mild home-grown chili powder plus a teensy-tiny pinch of super-duper-hot home-grown chile piquin powder. I reduced the sugar to 2 tablespoons -- just right for our tastes -- and the melted butter to 4 tablespoons. (Next time I'd use 6 tablespoons instead.)

This was more like a dough than a batter, about the same consistency as drop biscuits. Here they are spooned into the muffin tin:



And here they are after exactly 20 minutes in the oven:


Let's have dinner! Home-made lentil soup, corn muffins and red wine. Great for a winter evening!


These were excellent -- crunchy on the outside, tender and tasty on the inside. The cheddar and chive flavors were really subtle. The chili and corn were just right. I can see playing around with these -- one idea is to use more cheddar, cut into small chunks so you get little melty cheese bites here and there, with scallions instead of chives. How about some fresh chopped garlic tops in early spring? Hey, would roasted garlic be good? And I can't wait until late summer to try different varieties of home-grown peppers! I'm thinking the very mild Delicias jalapeños with sweet red Apple peppers, or the mildly hot red Beaver Dam bell peppers all by themselves.

Which reminds me, it's time to check our seed collection and order seeds...see you all next week!

23 comments:

HoneyB said...

I served mine with lentil soup also! They were delicious!

vibi said...

Very well done, Barbara!

I'm glad you're back... I really missed you!

jillbert said...

The cheese and chives sound great. Do use the red pepper next time, because they're delicious in these! I'm in Wisconsin too, and this week I'm all about using up what I have and not venturing out into the cold!

Teanna said...

I think your add ins sound fantastic- and absolutely resourceful!

Sara said...

Oooh, cheddar cheese and chives was a tasty idea. I am glad you commented on the consistency of your batter, mine was also thick and biscuit like, but I thought I did something wrong. Nice job.

chocolatechic said...

These were wonderful muffins.

We just loved them.

Jules Someone said...

I like the idea of adding a little cheddar. Yum!

Amanda said...

Looks yummy, and sometimes it feel so good to use up the pantry/freezer stuff. Now you know too what you would do differently. I skipped this week but will try this recipe soon!

Sabrina said...

Great additions! I love the chives idea!

Leslie said...

Welcome back! We missed you. I love your idea of melty cheese bites (but I'd eat almost anything with melty cheese bites!)

pinkstripes said...

I'm glad you liked them. I love your resourcefulness.

Rebecca said...

Oh, perfect with lentil soup. How delicious.

Karen said...

What a delicious dinner to serve these with. And what a great way to use up some of your leftover stuff! :)

spike. said...

I love a recipe where you can throw in whatever you have on hand!

Cooking for Comfort by Jennifer said...

YUM! Your dinner looks delicious!!!!

Tammy said...

these would have been perfect with soup! it is the middle of summer here so not really good timing for that, but I may try them with cheese in the winter and serve them with soup!

Jessica said...

I love it when recipes are flexible enough to allow you to use what you have on hand and the chives and cheese sound so good. I don't blame you for not wanting to venture out for just a few things -- I can never bring myself to do that.

Engineer Baker said...

Nice use-up-the-leftovers quest. I'm intrigued by the addition of chives...

Libby said...

These look great! The clementine lime pie is on vegetariantimes.com, I think you have to log in to get the recipe.

AmyRuth said...

Great job using items on hand. Sounds good to use chives. I too was surprised with the texture of the batter. Your muffins look great especially with your soup.
AmyRuth

dharmagirl said...

your dinner looks delicious, barbara:)

i understand all too well why you didn't want to go out in the cold...i'm really looking forward to temps over zero again:)

leanne said...

Soup and corn muffins. It looks delicious!

margot said...

I was tempted to add cheese to mine since I didn't have any of the add-in ingredients. Sounds like a great addition for next time.