Healthy and delicious savoury muffins

‘Muffins aren’t meant to be savoury,’ is the common objection to the savoury muffin one often hears. And it is fair objection, since the muffins that we are used to eating are full of sugar and things like chocolate and blueberries. As much as I love those two wonderful ingredients, I’m much more of a fan of eating something that can fill me up reasonably, can act as a substitute for a meal, and which is healthy; basically my idea of a pick-me-up! 🙂

The savoury muffin is great not only because it offers alternative to the usual sweet muffin, I also find it easier to experiment with because you can add in ingredients which you would normally use for cooking your main meals; and if you have a lot of different and interchangeable ingredients in your fridge, perfect! You have a really fun and easy baking session at your fingertips. 🙂

It’s a really versatile kind of ‘dish’ and there are different types of flour one can put into a savoury muffin, wholewheat, plain, buckwheat etc. I used whole wheat and buckwheat simply because they are healthier, but plain will work just fine too. I also used lactose-free milk simply because my cousin is lactose-intolerant. Have fun and play around with the ingredients! It really is an easy recipe to start with if you are new to baking or just want to whip up something quick for a meal – yea, muffins can compose a meal!

Carrot, courgette and feta cheese muffins
Time: 35 minutes
Makes about 7 – 8 medium-sized muffins
You will need: 2 large mixing bowls, large mixing spoon/whisk, muffin pan, muffin cups (optional), some extra oil or butter to grease the pan if you are not using muffin cups, oven (optional – joking)

Ingredients:
128 grams (or 1 cup) of buckwheat flour
128 grams (or 1 cup) of wholewheat flour
2 large eggs
140ml milk (I used Lactofree’s dairy-free milk)
60g pumpkin seeds (chopped)
160g feta cheese/parmesan cheese/pecorino cheese (leave some aside to sprinkle on top!)
3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
3 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of chopped fresh garlic
1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon of salt & 1 teaspoon of black pepper
2 teaspoons of dijon mustard
2 tablespoons of fresh, chopped oregano leaves (the key ingredient! It makes such a difference in my dish. The smell and taste of fresh oregano is simply delicious. There is no substitute for it. Why anyone would use dried oregano is anyone’s guess!)
1 carrot, peeled and grated
1 courgette, peeled and grated (FYI, I’m really into courgettes – zucchini for the Americans – these days and have therefore decided to add courgette into everything I cook. Not only are courgettes versatile and sweet-tasting, they’re also low in calories. Being largely composed of liquid, one would expect this.)

Method:
1. Preheat the over at 220 degrees/200 degrees celsius fan.
2. Combine the wet and dry ingredients separately before mixing together in one large bowl.

3. Spoon the muffin batter into muffin cups – or grease a muffin pan with butter/oil. Sprinkle the tops with a little more feta and chopped pumpkin seeds.
4. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or so until a toothpick comes clean when inserted in center of a muffin. Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. Cool completely before putting muffins in an air-tight container and storing in the fridge.

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