Every now and then I get a spare half hour to myself that I didn't plan. A few moments in time where I'm not expected to be somewhere or be doing something. This is when I frantically go through a list in my mind, checking the options as to how I might use this gift of time. Should I read the school newsletter or iron a few shirts? Should I sit down and have coffee and read a magazine? Should I catch up on my emails or tweet the minutia of my life? But what I usually do is bake a batch of muffins.
Brown Sugar Lemon Mascarpone Muffins
slightly adapted from How Sweet It Is
80g light brown suagr
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
60g unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
Preheat the oven to 180 C. Line a 12-hole muffin pan with paper liners. Set aside.
Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir with a whisk to break up any lumps and aerate. Add the lemon zest and mix with a fork to distribute through flour mixture. Add the mascarpone and stir it through using the fork. The mixture will become crumbly. Ditch the fork and get your hands into the mixture and lightly rub the mascarpone into the dry ingredients like you would rub butter into flour for making pastry. Once the mascarpone is evenly rubbed in, set the mixture aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, vanilla extract and melted butter. Add the wet ingredients into the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Do not over mix. The batter will be lumpy, but when it comes to muffin batter, lumpy is good.
Evenly distribute the batter among the muffin liners and bake for 16-18 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool a little before serving.