Monday, March 28, 2011

Hazelnut Muffins, with Teff Flour


These muffins are from Kim Boyce’s much-heralded Good to the Grain, and they are lovely.  I’d never used teff flour before, but I’ll definitely continue to use it!  It has sort of a delicate grassy flavor that is faintly sweet.  It’s wonderful in these muffins!

The only thing I’d like to change about these muffins is the body-to-topping ratio.  There was too much topping for the 12 muffins I got (you can see how much of it fell off – and the recipe was only supposed to yield 10 muffins!) and at the same time, there wasn’t enough of it for each bite of muffin.  I think next time I’ll fold half of the topping into the batter and see how that works out.


Hazelnut Muffins
from Good to the Grain

1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup raw hazelnuts, skins on, chopped into rough halves
1/2 tsp kosher salt

For topping:
1/2 cup raw hazelnuts, skins on, finely chopped
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon

For muffins:
Dry mix:
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup teff flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt

Wet mix:
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup plain yogurt
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°.  Grease muffin tins with butter or cooking spray.

Place the butter, hazelnuts, and salt in a small heavy-bottomed pan and cook over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally and watching for the edges of the nuts to turn golden brown.  Remove the pan from the flame before the nuts get too brown, as they will continue to cook in the hot butter.  Pour them into a bowl to cool down.

In a small bowl, stir together the topping ingredients. Set aside.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl.  In a medium bowl, whisk the wet ingredients until thoroughly combined. (This is where I'd fold in about half of the topping, after combining the other ingredients.)

Pour the hazelnuts and their butter over the dry ingredients, and then pour the buttermilk mixture over the top of that.  Using a spatula, mix together the wet and dry ingredients.

Scoop the batter into 10-12 muffin cups.  The batter should be mounded above the edges of the cups.  Sprinkle the topping evenly over the batter, gently pressing it into the batter so it adheres.

Bake for 22-26 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.  Let cool on a rack in the pan until they’re cool enough to handle. Remove each muffin from its cup and set it on its side in the cup to cool (this will keep them from getting soggy).

Tuesday, March 8, 2011



Happy Fat Tuesday!  In Swedish, “Fat Tuesday” is “Fettisdag,” and the traditional treat is a Fettisdagbullar – also known as Semla (Semlor if you’re talking about more than one).  Semlor are cardamom bread rolls filled with an almond paste mixture and topped with whipped cream and powdered sugar, and they are GOOOOD.


I go to a church that is of Swedish extraction, so we have a number of Real Swedish cookbooks between us.  A group of us got together to make these (after buying them the previous 3 years), and we noticed that all of the Real Swedish Recipes call for fresh yeast – and a lot of it!  That’s hard to find, so we found another recipe on and went with it.

We think this recipe is good, but it needs more cardamom.  The rolls are nice and cardamom-y when eaten plain, but once you add the filling the cardamom is drowned out.  Otherwise, these are perfect!  They aren’t hard to make, and they’re a lovely treat.



makes 16-20

For dough:
2 eggs
2/3 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 cups warm milk (70-80°F)
2 1/4 tsp (1 packet) active dry yeast

5 c all-purpose flour, plus 1 more cup later
1/2 c granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cardamom (next time I'll add about 1/2 tsp. more, or use freshly ground!)
4 tsp baking powder

For filling/topping:
1/2 c milk
5 oz. almond paste
2 cups whipping cream
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
confectioner’s sugar for dusting

In a large bowl, mix the milk, eggs, and butter.  Sprinkle the yeast over this mixture and let sit for about 5 minutes.  Meanwhile, whisk or sift together 5 cups of the flour, 1/2 cup of sugar, the salt, and the cardamom.  In a separate small bowl, whisk together the remaining 1 cup of flour and the baking powder; set aside.

Stir the milk mixture, then add the flour-sugar-cardamom mixture to it.  Stir until a soft dough forms.  Cover with a towel and let rise for about 30 minutes.

After it's risen, stir in the reserved flour mixture and knead for about 10 minutes, until the dough comes is smooth (you're looking for "windowpanes," if you're familiar with breadmaking).

Cut dough into 16-20 pieces and form into balls.  Place the balls on greased baking sheets, cover with towels or plastic wrap, and let rise until roughly doubled, 30-45 minutes.  Preheat oven to 375°.

Bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown.  Let cool.

Once cool, slice off the top (about 1/2" thick at center).  Cut or scoop out the centers of the rolls, leaving a shell about a 1/2" thick around the edges.  Tear the centers into small pieces and add up to 1/2 cup of milk, to moisten.  Stir in the almond paste until smooth.  Add more milk as needed, until the filling is as soft as pudding.

Spoon the filling back into the bread shells (you may have extra; I won't tell if you eat it with a spoon, because that's certainly not what I did...).  Whip the cream with 2 Tbsp sugar.  Pipe or spoon the whipped cream onto the rolls, nice and high.  Replace the "lids" of the bread.  Just before serving, dust the whole thing with confectioner's sugar.

  © Free Blogger Templates Spain by 2008

Back to TOP