Baking muffins, the impractical way…

In my last post I declared that I was going to be blogging more regularly again, but that clearly hasn’t really happened…  I may have forgotten to factor in the fact that I don’t have internet at home yet.  A minor oversight there.  But, as I also mentioned in my last post, I have moved into my new flat!  Which means that I have a kitchen again, hurrah!  Unfortunately, the crockery and cookware that were supposed to come with the flat haven’t actually made it into the flat yet…  The estate agent was supposed to drop it all off the evening that I moved in, then the next day, then it transpired that the estate agent didn’t actually have any of it yet, so she ordered it online to be delivered to the flat.  Luckily, I came to NZ vaguely prepared: I brought a vegetable knife, a measuring cup, my oven gloves, my apron and my silicone muffin moulds with me in my suitcase.  I’m not kidding (don’t judge me).  My rather resourcefully-assembled breakfast on my first morning in my new flat looked something like this:

I have since managed to borrow a knife, fork, spoon, bowl and saucepan from somebody to tide me over. I missed the delivery on Wednesday because I had to go in to uni to do some really important stuff, like sitting an English test.  Yes, really.  I had to sit a compulsory English test.  Which showed that my “language skills are appropriate for university.”  I’d have thought that would be fairly obvious considering that I was recently awarded an undergraduate degree (which involved writing a dissertation) by a generally well-regarded English-speaking university, but I’ve now sat a slightly pointless computerised test to prove it.  Anyway, I digress.  I’ve been wanting to bake since I moved in, but I’m obviously a little bit limited at the moment.  Any sensible person would have waited until the delivery of all the kitchen stuff today…

But I do love a challenge.  I saw some beautiful mangoes a couple of days ago and decided that I absolutely wanted to bake with them.  Once I have an idea, I tend to want to try it out as soon as possible, so in the absence of any baking tins, my options were limited to using my silicone muffin moulds.  I decided to attempt mango and chocolate muffins.  I had originally intended to include nuts, too, but couldn’t find the ones I wanted.  When I’ve figured out where to get those from, I’ll try my original idea.  In the mean time, I’ll be munching on these, which came out totally delicious, somewhat against the odds.  They aren’t the most perfect-looking muffins I’ve ever made, but considering that it’s the first time that I’ve used my new oven (which seems to heat better than I was expecting) and I made up a large proportion of the recipe as I went along, I’m really pleased with how they came out… I also couldn’t sift the dry ingredients (I don’t have a sieve yet), so they were a little less fluffy than I’m used to, but they taste so fruity and wonderful.  I got much more flesh from the mango than I was expecting, so they’re actually about 40% mango, which makes the muffins wonderfully moist and adds a hint of juicy sweetness which is perfectly counter-balanced by the slightly bitter dark chocolate chips.  I can’t wait to make these again!  (I have another mango in the fridge, I’m seriously tempted…)

The sign in the shop where I got the mangoes from said they were from NZ, but I wasn’t aware that mangoes were grown in NZ and I have a suspicion that they’re actually from Peru…  So I’m not sure if they’re actually local or not, but they are definitely in season, so I’m submitting these to Fabulicious Food‘s Simple and in Season blog challenge, which I’ve missed for the last couple of months.

I’m also submitting these muffins to a new blog challenge that was started last month by Caroline Makes and The More Than Occasional Baker: Alphabakes.  The host randomly picks a letter of the alphabet, and participants have to come up with something which either features a main ingredient or is a type of baked good beginning with that letter.  This month’s host is Caroline Makes, and she has chosen the letter “M“.  Which is obviously an excellent choice of letter.  Not that I’m biased towards the letter of my first name or anything…  These mango and chocolate muffins satisfy both options – do I get bonus points?  Anyway, I shall stop rambling on – the above-mentioned English test obviously didn’t test my ability to be concise, because I’d clearly have failed it.

Mango & chocolate muffins

Makes 10-12 muffins
Adapted from Mad About Muffins

As mentioned above, this is the first time I’ve used this oven, and I had to eye-ball quite a few of the ingredients, so whilst the muffins turned out wonderfully for me, do bear that in mind!  As I don’t have any scales at the moment, I can’t tell you the weight of mango flesh that I used, but just play it by eye.  I had thought of roughly mashing about half the mango and leaving the other half diced, but I forgot about that when I was actually making them.  As with most muffins, these are best eaten within a day of baking.  They make great snacks, but also an excellent breakfast.

Ingredients

1 smallish mango
175g all-purpose flour
¾ tbsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
75g light muscovado sugar
100g unsalted butter
1 egg
125ml yoghurt
5 tbsp milk
75g chocolate chips

Directions

1.  Line 10-12 muffins tin sections with paper liners or set out silicone moulds on a baking tray.  Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/fan oven 180°C.

2.  Peel the mango and remove as much flesh as possible, dice the mango flesh and set aside.

3.  Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a large bowl (you may need to push the sugar through with the back of a spoon).  Stir together.

4.  Melt the butter in a small saucepan or in the microwave.  Meanwhile, lightly beat the egg in a small bowl with a fork, then add the yoghurt and milk and mix together.

5.  Add all the wet ingredients, including the butter, to the dry ingredients and stir with a large metal spoon until just combined (don’t overmix – it’s perfect if you can still see a bit of flour).  Gently fold in the diced mango and chocolate chips.

6.  Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin sections.  Bake for 18-22 mins until well risen and golden and the tops spring back when lightly pressed (don’t press down on a chocolate chip though – they get really hot!).  Transfer to a wire rack to cool a little before eating.

Enjoy!

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13 Comments

Filed under Recipes, Student Life, Sweet Foods

13 responses to “Baking muffins, the impractical way…

  1. They look great. I suspect if I moved to the other side of the world I would also put my silicone muffin tray in my suitcase!

    You should have added some green food colouring too and sent to We Should Cocoa!

    • Mel

      Thanks! The silicone muffin moulds are actually super practical for travelling – they’re easy to squash into the suitcase and you don’t have to worry about them getting damaged.

      I thought of adding green food colouring… But only after I’d made them, so a bit late.

  2. I’ve never tried mango and chocolate paired together before – yum! And I’m very impressed you’ve moved to the other side of the world, barely unpacked and you’re baking already! Definitely got your priorities right….
    Thanks for entering Alphabakes!

    • Mel

      Thanks – I’m glad that you agree that I’ve got my priorities in order, haha. I’d never tried the combination before either, but I just felt inspired to give it a go… And I’m so glad I did – they go so well together!

      Looking forward to next month’s AlphaBakes…

  3. I agree with Caroline – never tried mango and chocolate before – definitely on the list now and super impressed that baking is the priority after moving so far away! Thank you so much for entering these to AlphaBakes. I think you get bonus points for getting your baking priorities right :) Perhaps we should start awarding bonus points if your name starts with the random letter for the month!

    • Mel

      Oooo bonus points, how exciting!! You totally should give out bonus points for having a name beginning with the month’s letter (ahem). Looking forward to next month’s letter… Hopefully all my baking stuff will have arrived by then!

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  5. Yum, I absolutely love mango. I have never thought of pairing it with chocolate – what a great idea. I’m also jealous of your incredibly fresh looking mango there…better than any we get here in the U.K! Congrats on your move – that’s so exciting! We just found out we’re moving to Vancouver in September for a year for my husband to study and I love travelling so can’t wait! Hope NZ is all you thought it would be and more :)

    • Mel

      Thanks! The mangoes here are definitely more reliably delicious than the ones in the UK. I was definitely happy to discover that!! Oooo Vancouver sounds exciting – I’ve always wanted to go to Cananda, it seems like a fascinating and beautiful place both to visit and to live. Good luck organising the move!!

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  8. I love little green sharky in the photo! I;m so pleased you’ve now moved into your new home. Have lots of fun and thank you so much for still joining in with Simple and in Season despite being half way across the globe! I’ve posted a round up today xxx

    • Mel

      Thanks! I’m sure I’ll have a great time here, and can’t wait to discover new foods! Though I think it might take me a little while to get used to the season being 6 months out of sync with the what I’m used to from the Northern hemisphere!

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