Herby cornbread muffins / loaf

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Very easy to make, these make a change from the usual bread roll to have alongside soup or salad – definitely best served warm, even if you just bung one in the microwave for 10 seconds. These would be good with all sorts of additions: more cheese (of course); dried herbs; crispy bacon bits stirred through the batter at the end; raisins; smoked paprika; chilli or olives. If you don’t have buttermilk to hand, you can use 300ml milk mixed with a tablespoon of lemon juice. If they stick to the pan LEAVE them to cool in the tin for 15 minutes! They should unstick with a knife run around the sides and come out just fine.

  • I’ve categorised these in weaning but make sure your baby can handle sweetcorn kernels – leave them out for really young ones.

Makes 20 muffins or two loaves.

Freezes well.

Ingredients
160g polenta or cornmeal
140g plain flour
90ml olive oil
150g sweetcorn
1 onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped
2 springs thyme, chopped
1.5 teaspoons baking powder
50g mature cheddar, grated
30g parmesan, grated
2 eggs
300ml buttermilk
75ml milk
Salt and pepper

Method
Preheat oven to 180C / gas 4. Grease a muffin tray or a loaf tin with some of the olive oil.

Fry the chopped onion over a low heat until it softens. Add the crushed garlic, sweetcorn and chopped herbs and cook for another couple of minutes until it smells wonderful.

Whisk together the eggs, buttermilk and milk. In a large bowl, mix the polenta/cornmeal, flour, baking powder and cheeses with 1/2 teaspoon salt, then pour in the egg mixture, the rest of the olive oil and the herby sweetcorn and mix well.

Spoon into the muffin tray or the loaf tin, filling the holes quite full, and bake for 25 – 30 minutes for muffins or 40 – 45 minutes for a loaf. Serve warm.

 

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