Bacon and Cherry Cornbread Muffins (and Competition)
These muffins are inspired by three things:
1. The idea of the all-american, deep south breakfast with cornbread, maple syrup and bacon. I’ve never been to the deep south but I have witnessed people having icecream for breakfast in new York state.
2. Nigella’s cherry-coke baked ham recipe that rears its sugary head every Christmas.
3. All the sweet bacon products doing the round at the moment like bacon jam, bacon brittle, bacon fudge etc.
Cornbread is a revelation. It’s so easy to make and tastes so good. It can be a willing recipient for cheese, chillies and all manner of other options. Plain it goes with chili con carne really well, or a spicy stew. These beauties though, with their pig and fruit combo make for an amazing brunch product.
Also, the French Glacé Cherry cheerleaders have given me a branded timer, kitchen scale, apron and samples of French Glacé Cherries to give away. I’ll tell you how at the end.
Bacon and Cherry Cornbread Muffins
Note: most large supermarkets now have world food sections. I would suggest getting your cornmeal from the Caribbean bit there rather than buying polenta. It’s much cheaper.
Makes 6 + 1 for testing
105g fine cornmeal (polenta)
50g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
small pinch bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp sunflower oil
175g natural yoghurt (I used 0% but low fat or full is fine)
50ml milk (I used skimmed but again, any is fine)
50g natural French glacé cherries, chopped into at least quarters
7 whole glace cherries for decorating
8 rashers of smokey streaked bacon
Preheat oven to 230c
Grease your muffin tin. Take a rasher of bacon and wrap it around the edge of each muffin hole to create a “case” with no bottom.
Put the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, bicarb, salt and sugar in a bowl.
In a jug mix the yoghurt and milk, then add the egg, oil and cherries and beat gently to combine.
Add the liquid to the dry mix and stir well until thoroughly mixed.
Pour or spoon the mixture into each muffin hole. It won’t rise quite as much as cake, but it will still grow.
Take the final bacon rasher and divide along the length to create strips (using the grain of the meat). Cut thumb length pieces and wrap one around each cherry. Place them on top of the muffins.
Bake for 15mins.
I took the photos at this point. The bacon was cooked BUT a bit soft for my preference. I reheated some the next day out of the muffin tin and the bacon crisped up nicely around the edges, so I suggest the following:
Wait for the muffins to cool a little, place a baking tray over the top and flip them onto it so that they are bottom up. Pop them back into the oven for 10mins at 180c.
Serve either on their own with strong coffee, or buttered, or we had them with poached eggs.
To win the Glacé Cherry branded items do one or both of the following: 2. Leave a comment below telling me what your favourite cherry based memory is, be it cherry coloured or cherry flavoured.
COMPETITION CLOSED. CONGRATULATIONS TO ERIC
I was sent the cherries and given the prize by Sopexa so that I could play around and come up with a new and tasty dish. They are championing French Glace Cherries. If you would like to see another idea, head over to The More Than Occasional Baker to see her cherry and coconut bundt cake.
The prize is only available to UK entrants. Your name will be given to spoexa who will be responsible for sending the prize. Entries close at midnight on 31st August. Please makes sure you fill out your details when commenting so that I can contact you. If I am unable to contact you within 48hrs I will try the next person. I will use a random number generator to choose the winner.