In fact not only is it much larger than originally anticipated but we actually don’t have enough floor space so it’s taken up residence on one of the original and much in-demand seats leaving us with less seating than we started with…
Unfortunately while filling her, 90% of the "beans" missed, flooding the floor. The millions of small white Styrofoam balls quickly dispersed, ending up statically attaching themselves to us, the floor, the walls, the TV… you get the picture! It was like something out of a low budget horror film…
Add to that an incredibly messy baking session...
making my sister-in-law some Mexican wedding cookies for her birthday (who knew flour’s so explosive?) and a nephew who is currently in the process of some serious Fraser-led weaning (must remember not to encourage raspberry blowing at the dinner table).
No Fraser you can’t eat the camera!
What I needed was a no mess, faster than a speeding bullet, recipe for Pecan and Maple muffins... Enter stage left a recipe from the Hummingbird bakery book.
DELISH! They're not too sweet (which is always the danger when using maple syrup) with lots of crunch from the pecans.
Fingers crossed that with a batch of these in the fridge, at least the kitchen will have a breif respite from the constant layer of flour and icing sugar coating every surface... but I pity whoever ends up climbing near me and my chalk bag this evening!
Line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases.
Preheat the oven to 170°C.
Place the flour, sugar, salt and raising agents in a bowl and mix thoroughly.
Add the buttermilk, egg and vanilla and mix until thoroughly incororated.
Pour in the melted butter and mix in.
Stir in half the maple syrup and the pecans.
Spoon into the cases until approximately 2/3 full. Drizzle with the remaining syrup and place a pecan half on top.
Bake for approximately 20-30 minutes until golden brown and springy to the touch.
Cool for a few moments in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
350g plain flour
160g caster sugar
¾ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp vanilla extract
70g unsalted butter, melted
240g pecan nuts, chopped (reserving 12 to decorate)
200ml maple syrup