These muffins are a tribute to my lovely mother, whom I haven’t seen for almost a year (besides on the webcam), yet who is always there for me. The cakes literally could not have been made without her, as I am yet to find poppy seeds in Hong Kong and had to rely on her to ship some out to me. And they are one of her favourites, which means they’re one of my favourites to make – I do love to treat someone. I only ever make them at Christmas, as that’s the only time I can find fresh cranberries, so they’re always associated with the happiest time of the year. This time I managed to nab the last bag of frozen cranberries from the western supermarket on Thanksgiving and was very pleased with myself. It works just as well with thawed berries as fresh – they are beautiful and tart…just like my mother!
Cranberry & Poppy Seed Muffins
Makes 12 BIG muffins, from BBC GoodFood
100g unsalted butter
284ml soured cream
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
280g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp salt
200g golden caster sugar
4 tsp poppy seeds
140g fresh cranberries (or frozen ones, thawed)
1. Preheat the oven to 190C. Line a muffin tin with paper cases.
2. Melt the butter, then leave it to cool for a couple of minutes.
3. Beat in the sour cream, followed by the eggs and vanilla (off the heat).
4. In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking powder, bicarb, salt, sugar and poppy seeds.
5. Mix together the wet and dry ingredients, along with the cranberries. Make sure everything is well incorporated.
6. Fill the paper cases generously and bake for 20-25 minutes.
7. When a skewer comes out clean, the muffins are ready. Transfer to a cool rack to cool slightly, but they are best eaten still warm.