I knew that we needed some sort of bread because Josh is a carbophile and it was his birthday meal. I've often eyed the Herb or roasted garlic muffins (p. 635), even going so far as the roast the garlic and forget what I meant to use it for a couple times. I like savory muffins much more than sweet muffins. I honestly think that Red Lobster's cheddar muffins are one of the most delicious things in chain restaurants today (although I unfortunately don't like most of the other offerings at RL).
In one bowl I mixed flour, baking powder, and salt. In the other I mixed eggs, cream, and melted butter:
I combined the two and folded in a head of roasted garlic (peeled and mashed) and some lemon zest:
It's imperative not to overmix when you are making muffins or they will get tough.
I spooned the batter into the muffin pans and popped them in the oven. At this point I noticed a problem.
I had forgot to add the 2/3 cup of sugar.
That's a lot of sugar to forget. It seems like that could be the difference between success and failure for a recipe. I had thought the batter seemed too dry, which is why I was re-reading the recipe. The sugar being left out wouldn't make the mixture seem dry but certainly could be a problem.
The muffins had only been in the oven for a minute or two so I took them back out, dumped them all back in to the bowl, and added the sugar and vanilla:
I mixed them again. I wasn't optimistic about how the muffins were going to turn out--this was a lot of dough abuse. In my defense, I was making a cake, muffins, ham, glaze, carrot puree, and salad dressing, so there was a lot going on.
I spooned them back in to the muffin trays and cooked them for about 17 minutes:
Perfection. Perfect outside and inside:
Believe it or not, they actually turned out quite good, which I would never have expected. They were still light and flaky (probably not quite as light and flaky as they would have been but very acceptable). They weren't particularly sweet and I think it would have been a disaster without the sugar. The roasted garlic was a nice undertone and they were terrific with the ham (although I think they would be even better with a pork roast). Next time I make them, I might add a little cheese.
I think this is a testament to why you should try to save screwups instead of just throwing them away. Sometimes you can rescue a mistake.
- Muffins stale quickly because the small amount of fat can't protect the starch (On Food and Cooking, p. 554). This is probably why if you add the higher amount of fat that TJOC calls for (a stick of butter rather than a half stick) and a higher fat milk product (cream rather than milk) the muffins last for much longer.