May 8, 2013

Strawberry and white chocolate muffins

OK. I gave in. I bought imported strawberries. A couple of weeks before the Polish delicacy becomes available. I got a little impatient plus Hania was calling for them. The strawberry season is so short here and the local berries are so good, we just eat them fresh, by pounds. The foreign kind leaves a lot to be desired. In fact, I just tried one to confirm my theory. No desire to have another one. I'll wait. Meanwhile, I can do a little preview. 

With temperature, sugar and vanilla, strawberries are not bad. And the muffins are even better. Hania called them "the best ever". She probably just missed strawberries. The muffins are full of them. I increased the fruit amount significantly, probably to the max. Any more and you'll have a cobbler. 

Did I mention that these muffins also taste like white chocolate. The combination of the summer fruit and light colored chocolate is refreshing, exquisite and attractive. They are darker in color because I used whole wheat flour (together with some white). And to finish it off, the crumble on top which gives a nice crunch and a fun game of textures.

The strawberry season is officially open! The season for good things is always on!

Recipe adapted from Giallo Zafferano
time: 30 min preparation + 50 min baking = 1hr 20 min

  • 350 g (3/4 lbs) fresh strawberries
  • 150 g (5 oz) white chocolate
  • 180 g (1 1/2 sticks) butter, room temperature
  • 150 g (3/4 cup) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 200 ml (5/6 cup) whole milk
  • seeds from 1 vanilla bean
  • 190 g (1 1/3 cups) white flour
  • 190 g (1 1/3 cups) whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons (8 g) baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (4 g) baking soda
  • pinch of salt
for crumble
  • 50 g (5 Tablespoons) flour
  • 40 g (2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons) cane sugar
  • 30 g (2 Tablespoons) butter, cold from the fridge

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F (static function). Line a muffin form with paper muffin liners. A muffin form for 12 won't be enough. I used some silicon forms as well, or you can make a small cake in a loaf form on the side.
  2. Prepare crumble. In a medium bowl, add flour, sugar and butter diced in small pieces. Working with the tips of your fingers, combine fast the ingredients till all covered in grease. It should look like random bread crumbs from cutting bread. Place it in the fridge. 
  3. In a medium bowl, sift together both flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Dice strawberries (size of a dice). Chop chocolate, size of chocolate chips.
  5. In a bowl of a standing mixer, using a whisk attachment, beat butter with sugar till light and fluffy, about 3 min. Add eggs, one at a time. The mixture might become grainy, but that's OK. In a thin stream, pour in the milk. Switch attachment to paddle. Add flour mix, blend till combined. Turn mixer off. Fold in chocolate chips. Fold in strawberry pieces.
  6. Using two tablespoons, fill the forms with batter, all the way to the top. Sprinkle about 1 Tablespoon of crumble on each. Put it in the hot oven for 40 - 50 minutes, till browned and toothpick from a muffin comes out clean.
  7. Take them out, let them cool on a cooling rack and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.

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