Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Cookbook challenge, week 15: Butternut pumpkin muffins with a frosty top

The theme for this week: muffins! I chose a recipe from Jamie Oliver's Jamie At Home. It was an intriguing sounding mix for a muffin, and I felt like something a little more savoury (although the end result was definitely a sweet muffin, not a savoury one).

A few notes about this recipe:
- It specified butternut squash, and I used butternut pumpkin (I'm pretty sure they are the same thing, squash vs pumpkin is a regional difference?)
- It said it would make 12, but it made 24! I could have filled my muffin tins a bit more, but even still there would have been more than 12
- I think my muffins were a tad undercooked (the picture in the book shows Jamie's to be very dark brown)
- I substituted a normal orange for the Clementine specified
- I only made a half-recipe of the topping, yet I used twice as much icing sugar than specified for a full recipe and the icing was still too runny
- I substituted a couple of drops of vanilla essence for the vanilla pod seeds

The original, unaltered ingredients are as follows:

400g butternut squash, skin on, deseeded and roughly chopped
250g light soft brown sugar
4 large eggs
sea salt
300g plain flour, unsifted
2 heaped tsp baking powder
a handful of walnuts
1 tsp ground cinnamon
175ml extra virgin olive oil

For the frosting:
zest of 1 clementine
zest of 1 lemon and juice of 1/2 a lemon
140ml soured cream
2 heaped tablespoons sifted icing sugar
1 vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out

Preheat oven to 180ÂșC.
Line muffin tins with paper cases.
Whiz the squash in a food processor until finely chopped.
Add the sugar and crack in the eggs.
Add a pinch of salt, flour, baking powder, walnuts, cinnamon and olive oil and whiz together until well-beaten without overmixing.
Fill the cases with the mixture.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until cooked and not sticky.
Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

Place most of the clementine zest, all of the lemon zest and lemon juice in a bowl.
Add the soured cream, icing sugar and vanilla and mix well.
Taste and adjust with more lemon juice or icing sugar if necessary.
Top the cakes.
Sprinkle with the remains of the clementine zest and lavender flowers or rose petals if desired.



  1. ooh these lok delicious! well done

  2. I've got this book & have always wanted to try this, it looks great but your notes are very handy. I seem to recall cooking a carrot cake of his (maybe from the same book) & I had to cook it for about double the time before it set so not too sure about his sweets recipes exactness

  3. I've got this cookbook too and saw these. Your muffins look delish, especially how the icing is running down the sides.

  4. Thanks! They are a great way to use up almost a whole small butternut pumpkin... so much vegetable has to be good for you, right? :)