This recipe comes from another new addition to my recipe book family - Home Cooking by Rachel Allen. I know some people aren't keen her, particularly her television programmes, but I quite like her and have found all her books well presented and appealing. As always I made a bee-line for the cake recipes and chose this one to start with. This recipe appears in the breakfast section, which is fine by me - I'm always happy to have an excuse to have cake for breakfast. Having said that, these definitely fall into the "healthy cake" section thanks to the wholemeal flour, oats and large quantities of fruit.
I'll definitely be making these again. The wholemeal flour makes for a pretty dense cake, but the prunes and apples add enough sweetness and flavour to make the muffins taste good. They keep well too.
Don't be alarmed by the instruction to fill the cases to the top by the way - these muffins are not big risers.
Spicy Prune and Apple Muffins
(adapted from Home Cooking by Rachel Allen)
275g/10oz plain wholemeal flour
50g/2oz rolled oats
125g/4 1/2oz soft light brown sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tso ground mixed spice
175g/6oz pitted prunes, roughly chopped
1 eating or cooking apple, peeled, cored and finely diced
250ml/9 fl oz buttermilk
50g/20z butter, melted and cooled
1) Preheat the oven to 200c/400f/gas mark 6. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases.
2) Mix all of the dry ingredients together and stir in the prunes and apple
3) Mix the wet ingredients together and then add to the dry ingredients, taking care not to overmix (I found mixing in all of the dry ingredients a bit of a trial as there didn't seem to be quite enough liquid - in the end I added the rest of my 284ml pot of buttermilk which seemed to do the trick).
4) Divide the batter between the muffin cases, filling them almost to the top. Bake for 20 minutes until golden and firm to the touch.