Spice it up with savoury muffins

ALISON AND SIMON HOLST
Last updated 05:00 15/02/2012
muff
A MOMENT TO SAVOUR: Smoked paprika adds flavour to these vegetable-packed muffins.

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Savoury muffins are underrated. When you mention muffins to most people, they almost always seem to think of something sweet, but their savoury cousins are worth considering.

Just as simple to make as sweet muffins, savoury muffins served with a soup or salad can transform a simple meal to something much more interesting – they also make a great alternative to a sandwich in a packed lunch.

Using smoked paprika in these gives them a lovely pinkish tinge and a slightly smoky flavour – if you use the smaller amount the flavour is quite subtle, and if you use the larger amount the flavour is more pronounced.

SMOKY CAPSICUM AND ZUCCHINI MUFFINS

For 12 regular-sized muffins:

2 cups self-raising flour

1 cup grated cheese

1-2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp salt

1 large egg

3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup oil

2 medium (about 250g in total) zucchini, grated

1/2 cup (80-100g) chopped roasted capsicum

Preheat the oven to 210C.

Measure the self-raising flour, grated cheese, paprika, cumin and salt into a large bowl and stir to combine.

Break the egg into a medium-sized bowl. Add the milk and oil and stir to combine thoroughly. Coarsely grate the zucchini, then stir into the milk mixture with the chopped capsicum.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and gently fold everything together until just combined, taking care not to over-mix. Spoon the mixture into 12 thoroughly non-stick sprayed or buttered muffin pans.

Place the tray/s on a rack in the middle of the oven and bake at 210C for 12-15 minutes or until the muffins are golden brown and the centres spring back when pressed gently. Remove from the oven and cool in the tray for a few minutes before turning out on to a rack to cool completely.

Serve warm or at room temperature. They're delicious "as is", but even better lightly buttered.

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