Chocolate-Chocolate-Chip Muffins

Muffin recipes are a great thing to have up your sleeve for those times you need a quick bake. I personally like these muffins as an occasional weekend breakfast when I have overnight guests.

The first time I made these beauties was in late June last year (2017). My cousin’s daughter was feeling under the weather, so I made her these to cheer her up; and do you know what? They did. They had plenty of chocolate chips in, which the little darling approved of very much. The second time I made these, I didn’t have enough dark chocolate chips, so I combined a packet of dark, and one of white. They provided a nice little contrast in the finished bake. My niece, Nieve, likes these too, and she’s quite sure her baby sister, Eliza, will as well when she’s able to.

The trick with muffins is to remember that lumpy batter is good here, it produces a lighter muffin, which is what we want. Somehow. I may be the first student in my school’s history to get top marks in the science module, but I can’t fathom how lumpy batter can make light muffins. (For the answer, check out How Baking Works and What to Do When It Doesn’t by James Morton, who was a contestant on the third series of The Great British Bake Off. He was my joint favourite with John Whaite, who was that year’s winner, there’s something quite sexy about a man who can cook/bake well.)

If you’ve never made muffins before, I feel there is one thing you should know. They won’t be as domed or aerated as the ones you get in coffee shops and supermarkets, but I don’t mind that. And you shouldn’t either.

As well as an occasional weekend breakfast dish, these make an excellent host gift if you’re staying overnight, even as a baked goods sale item.

Chocolate-Chocolate-Chip Muffins – adapted from Feast by Nigella Lawson

These are simple as f**k to make. You combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl, and whisk the wet ones in a measuring jug, pour in and lightly mix.

250g plain flour

2 tbsp best cocoa powder

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

150g chocolate chips, plus extra for the top

175g caster sugar

250ml full-fat milk

6 tbsp vegetable/sunflower/rapeseed oil

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 large egg

Preheat the oven to 200c/fan180c/gas 6. Line a 12 cup muffin tray with paper cases and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl measure the dry ingredients, combine with a balloon whisk, set aside. In a large measuring jug combine the wet ingredients.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until combined, but not fully. You’ll want a lumpy batter for light muffins. Divide between the muffin cases, and sprinkle over the extra chocolate chips.

Bake for 20 minutes. They are done when a cocktail stick, when inserted in the centre, comes out clean. Cool in the tray for a few minutes before popping onto a cooling rack to cool completely. Although they are awesome when still slightly warm. Especially with a cafe latte.

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