Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Chicken and Corn Muffins - #MuffinMonday

It's a special edition of Muffin Monday - Muffin-Wednesday-because-the-last Monday-fell-on-Christmas-Day. I think this was definitely my busiest Christmas season ever. After a marathon cooking session on Monday (I rarely cook so I am extreeeeeeemely slow in the kitchen), I was ready for bed by 7 pm. It was great to get almost 8 hours sleep and wake up on Boxing Day with very few pressing issues. And then I remembered that I hadn't made my muffins yet!

I chose ingredients that I knew would be left over from dinner - cured chicken (we don't eat ham anymore so we cure a chicken in just the same way we'd have made the ham; I miss ham!) and some corn. Truthfully, the leftover corn would come from me always holding back some corn to nibble on - even if my salad could do with more. And here's even more truth for you, I didn't even add the full amount of corn to the muffins and as I stole some to nibble again. I kinda like corn.

Chicken and Corn Muffins
Yield: 6 muffins

1 cup flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup milk
3 tablespoons oil
heaping 1/4 cup cooked chicken, diced small
heaping 1/4 cup corn

Preheat oven to 400 F and line 6 cups in a muffin tin with wrappers.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, cayenne, garlic, and onion. In a separate container whisk together the egg yolk, milk, and oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir gently until most of the flour is moist. Next fold in the chicken and the corn.

Bake 15 minutes or until the tops are lightly golden and a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.

  • 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne does make these a little spicy. 
  • Some cumin would have been wonderful here but I forgot to add it.
  • Cheese would have been great here too.

Muffin Monday

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Thursday, December 21, 2017

Sorrel Mini Bundts - #BundtBakers

For the past week, I've been neck-deep in my least favourite Jamaican Christmas tradition - cleaning the house. I don't know whose grand idea it was to deep clean the house at Christmastime but I don't like you very much right now. I'm not being my regular whiny self either, folks. This is some serious cleaning. It's spring cleaning on steroids. EVERY SINGLE ITEM in the house is CLEANED. And while that's going on, the house might also be painted. Every curtain and drape, every single wine glass that we never use because we never drink wine, every single one of those 1 million plates that I think we need to get rid of because we don't use them ever and I don't want to wash them next year. Dear shot glass collection, you are on my hit list. And no, I do not have a dishwasher. While all the crazy cleaning is going on, Jamaicans might also be painting their homes. Why oh why do we do this to ourselves? Isn't Christmas hectic enough? I need a very long nap and a cup of sorrel with lots of rum.


Now, sorrel is definitely my favourite Christmas tradition. The plant is called Jamaica hibiscus elsewhere but if you ask for hibiscus here, you will get something quite different. You'll find it in various shades of red, with almost everyone preferring the darkest colour that you can find. The sorrel is placed in a large pot with water and lots of spices (my family uses ginger, cinnamon leaves, cloves, pimento, and orange peel), brought to a boil and then left to steep for a while. It's then sweetened and then copious amounts of rum is added. We don't add rum in my household and on more than one occasion, I have walked away from a friend's house extremely tipsy because I forgot that everyone else goes a little bit crazy with the rum. It might actually be unpatriotic to NOT add rum to your sorrel so fellow Jamaicans, don't arrest me. We just pretend to be teetotallers over here but we really aren't.

This month the Bundt Bakers are baking up Christmas Bundts and I decided to try out a sorrel bundt. It just isn't Christmas if there's no sorrel. I don't care about the fruit cake and the ham. (OK, I do care about the ham.) But the sorrel? It's a must have. The sorrel gives the little cakes a pinkish hue. I think it might have been a bit more pink if I'd made my batter a bit acidic - but that's an experiment for another time.

Thanks for hosting, Sneha! Lots of Christmassy bundts below. Keep scrolling!

Sorrel Mini Bundts

3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons oil
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup sorrel (prepared or steep 1/2 cup dried sorrel in 1/2 cup hot water overnight. Drain.)
Thoroughly grease 3 one cup capacity mini Bundt pans. Preheat oven to 350F.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.
In a separate bowl, mix together the butter and sugar until well combined and then add the oil, egg, and vanilla. Mix until thoroughly combined.
Add half the flour mixture to the butter mixture along with the sorrel. Mix until almost combined and then add the remaining flour. Mix well and then divide into prepared mini Bundt pans.

Bake 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into a mini Bundt comes out clean.


#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on the BundtBakers home page.
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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Bacon and Cherry Shortbread Cookies

Tis the season for all things red and the Crazy Ingredient Challenge is celebrating accordingly with bacon and maraschino cherries.

I decided to make some mini shortbread cookies. They look unassuming and when you bite in, you get that sweet flavour that you expect from a cookie and then it hits you - little bits salty bacon. I've wanted to put bacon in dessert for a long time now. I thought I would have made some cupcakes for this challenge but settled on my nemesis - cookies.  They were quick to make (chilling time excluded) so it was a lot easier than making cupcakes.

Visit the linkup below for other bacon and maraschino cherry treats!

Bacon and Cherry Shortbread Cookies


3/4 cup butter, room temperature
2/3 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice
2 cups flour
8 maraschino cherries, finely chopped, drained
1/4 cup cooked bacon, finely chopped

Cream butter for 1 minute and then add sugar, vanilla, and almond. Beat for another minute then add in the maraschino cherry juice. Scrape down and beat together then slowly add the flour. Mix until it just forms a dough then stir in the chopped maraschino cherries and bacon.

Chill dough for at least four hours then preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Form the dough into tablespoon sized balls. Bake for 10-12 minutes until cookies have spread only slightly and have only just started to brown.Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing.


  • Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction
  • I used a little less cherry juice but I think I'd have preferred it with the full tablespoon so I left that in the recipe.

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Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Eggnog Loaf - #FoodieExtravaganza

Extravaganza is celebrating National Eggnog month. This eggnog loaf is so easy to throw together that I've made it twice in the last 3 days. It's also a great base that I can't wait to play around with some more. I'm a huge fan of cinnamon so of course, I would love to swirl some in. But for today, the focus is on nutmeg. Foodie  Now, I don't drink eggnog but I always assumed that nutmeg was the only (main) spice used. While I was trying to figure out what to make, I started reading about the history of eggnog. I was quite surprised when they mentioned cinnamon. To me it has always been the "nutmegy", milk drink. I didn't add the cinnamon though. I'm letting the nutmeg shine. Next time, cinnamon, next time.

Be sure to check out the other eggnog treats below. Happy National Eggnog Month!

Eggnog Loaf
Yield: 1 loaf; number of servings depends on how much you life cake
2 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 eggs
1 cup eggnog
1 cup light brown sugar 
1//2 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon rum extract

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 9" x 5" loaf pan
Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, eggnog, sugar, oil, vanilla, rum extract.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. It won't take long - don't overmix.
Bake 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Here are the other eggnog treats!

Eggnog Cookies by Caroline’s Cooking
Eggnog Cheesecake by Karen’s Kitchen Stories
Eggnog Banana Bread by Making Miracles
Heavenly Almond Cookies by Faith, Hope, Love & Luck Survive Despite a Whiskered Accompice
Eggnog Tasting + A Classic Recipe by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Eggnog Loaf by Passion Kneaded
Alcohol Free Eggnog by Sneha’s Recipes
Frosted Eggnog Cookies by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Cinnamon Streusel Eggnog Coffeecake by Food Lust People Love
Vegan Eggnog by Cookaholic Wife

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