Yes, I know! Christmas is long gone but am I the only one to have a glut of cranberry sauce? In my opinion it’s better to make too much of the stuff lest you run out over the Christmas period and not have any to hand when eating those wonderful leftovers and that would be a disaster! Well maybe not a disaster but it would suck.
I’d made plenty to see us through two huge dinners plus several snacks and I wanted to find a way to use the remainder that didn’t involve dolloping it on the side of a plate. I also wanted to find a sweet outlet for this fabulous sauce because it’s mainly (always?) eaten as an accompaniment to savoury food. The idea came to me, not surprisingly, at breakfast – I think I do my best work early on a Saturday morning. I’d returned home for the weekend and was in much need of some cooking therapy – the kitchen on tour is not conducive to anything other than very minor cooking endeavours. It’s always a relief then when I return to my small but perfectly formed Cornish kitchen. That precious part of our home never fails to inspire me, which is something I am seriously struggling with on tour – f.y.i. it’s an inspiration void.
Up I was bright and early conjuring up these anytime, but particularly great at breakfast, muffins and I suddenly felt like myself again. Isn’t it funny how your identity can be totally screwed up when you don’t have an outlet (in my case culinary) on a regular basis. My cooking is so entwined with my sanity and I get very edgy when I’m away from my kitchen for any length of time so these weekend trips home (expensive but necessary!) have been a saving grace when it comes to my coping with this emotionally challenging tour. Being back in my kitchen full time is just one of the many things I am looking forward to when this hellish experience is over. That and my darling Husband, of course – I’ve vowed to never be away from him for any length of time ever again.
Ugh. I shall console myself for the present with presenting to you these beautiful cranberry sauce muffins – tart, tangy, sweet and moist. Enjoy!
cranberry sauce muffins
1 cup spelt flour
1/2 cup wholewheat flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup cranberry sauce (pref. fresh but jarred will work too)
3/4 cup soya milk
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp cider vinegar
handful dried cranberries
handful chopped walnuts
Pre-heat oven to 175 degrees celsius/350 degrees fahrenheit.
Line a tin with muffin cases (mine had dinosaurs on them – eek!) or use silicon muffins cases if you don’t need to transport them.
In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients.
Do the same with the wet ingredients ensuring they are thoroughly combined – I like to use a large whisk.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry adding a little more soy milk if the batter is too dry. Carefully fold in the dried cranberries and walnuts using a spatula. Fill the muffin cases 3/4 full and bake in the oven for about an hour. I know this seems like a long time but they are being baked at a lower heat for longer rather than blasting them for a shorter period of time. Keep checking them (every oven is different) and when you think they look ready (golden on top) insert a toothpick or chopstick into the centre. If it comes out clean they are ready!
Allow to cool before eating – I did try one straight out of the oven (the one in the photo below was warm) and whilst it was nice I much preferred them when they were completely cool. They should keep for up to a week if stored in an airtight container.