This Friday is the beginning of the Easter holiday break, and I thought I would share a classic recipe with you. My family is from the United States and as such we often use American style recipes in our family cuisine. I have an book entitled Virginia Cookbook: Selected Recipes from Virginia’s Favorite Cookbooks, by Gwen McKee & Barbara Moseley. The book is a collection of old and new recipes taken from various sources and combined to provide a taste of typical Virginian fare. Here is a delicious Easter themed recipe I highly recommend:
Easter Hot Cross Muffins
1/2 cup raisins 1/4 teaspoon clove (optional)
2 tablespoons orange juice 1/2 cup candied peel
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 cup chopped dried apricot
2/3 cup granulated sugar 1 egg 1 cup low-fat milk
1 tablespoon baking powder 1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon allspice 1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups sifted icing sugar
4 teaspoons orange juice
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place raisins in a small bowl. Pour juice overtop. Microwave, covered, until hot, 1 minute Set aside. Lightly coat or spray a 12-cup muffin tin or 9×5 inch loaf pan with oil. In a large bowl, using a fork, stir flour with sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, allspice, salt and cloves. Stir in raisin mixture, candied peel and apricots.
In a medium-size bowl, whisk egg. Whisk in milk, oil, butter and vanilla. Pour over flour mixture. Stir just until mixed. Batter will be lumpy. Divide between muffin cups or scrape into loaf pan and smooth top.
Bake in centre of preheated oven until a cake tester inserted into centre of muffins or loaf comes out clean, 20 to 25 minute for muffins, 1 hour for loaf. Remove pan to a cooling rack. After 5 minutes, remove from pan and cool completely on rack. Store muffins or loaf in an airtight container and store at room temperature up to 3 days or freeze up to 2 months.
Stir sifted icing sugar with orange juice until smooth. Drizzle over cooled muffins in a criss-cross pattern to mimic hot cross buns or spoon over loaf, if you wish.
These muffins are beautifully complex in taste, excellent treats for the Easter break. Bake some and enjoy.