I’ve been trying to decide whether or not to post this recipe just yet, I mean it is only the beginning of November, but seeing as Food Network are already showing festive specials and my Facebook news feed is filling up with all things Christmas I decided that it isn’t too early after all. So this is a recipe for those of you who (like me) don’t mind Christmas being shoved at you from early November. We are big on Christmas in my house, in fact we love it, from wrapping gifts, choosing a massive Christmas tree and decorating it to baking some delicious goodies, we know how to celebrate the festive season.
In some respects Christmas has come early to our house anyway, I’ve baked about two hundred mince pies over the last week to give away as samples at a Christmas open day and have already taken lots of orders for them. I’m certainly going to have a busy December.
Apart from the obvious mince pies, there are some things you just associate with Christmas and gingerbread is definitely one of them. The aromatic blend of mixed spice; cinnamon and ground ginger give the kind of warmth only Christmas could, which makes them perfect for Christmas morning. They will make the whole house smell magical and the dry ingredients can be weighed out the night before – so you only need spend minutes whisking in the wet ingredients on Christmas morning. Let’s face it, we all have plenty to do Christmas morning without running around making muffins.
They make wonderful gifts for friends; package them up into pretty wicker baskets with beautiful red ribbons. But, whether you decide to eat them yourself or give them away to a lucky friend, they absolutely must be served with a pot of freshly brewed tea to really appreciate them.
This recipe makes 12 scrumptious muffins, but I’ve found that making two batches is sensible as they seem to disappear rather quickly. The children really seemed to enjoy them, which I imagine is because they taste like a gingerbread man, only in muffin form.
- 250g softened butter
- 220g dark brown sugar
- 1 ½ tbsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tbsp mixed spice
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- Pinch of salt
- 200ml milk
- 250g self raising flour, sifted
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a 12-hole muffin tin with muffin cases.
- Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy, and then add the vanilla extract.
- Add the spices, salt, milk and eggs, whisk for a couple of minutes until combined.
- Slowly add the flour whisking until combined into the mixture. It will be quite thick (this is normal). Evenly spoon the mixture into the muffin cases.
- Bake for 15 minutes, leave to cool and dust with icing sugar.