Nutella muffins

Everyone loves Nutella, right? If you said no, then I don’t think we can be friends anymore…
Mr Colonial Cravings informs me that yesterday Nutella turned 50. In his infinite wisdom he has also suggested that I make Nutella muffins. It seems to have escaped his attention that I almost never make muffins. The reason for this is that muffins are my nemesis. I’ve tried, I really have. They always seem to end up like dense little hockey pucks in pretty paper cases. It’s not just with my improvised recipes either, I can follow a recipe to the letter and I still can’t get them to be as fluffy as I would like. I think I over-mix, I just can’t help myself.
I’ve tried really hard with these ones, just for you. I know that using wholewheat flour was a bit of a gamble when I’m already engaged in a battle to make them light. Having said that though, Nutella on fresh brown bread is one of my favourite comfort foods so I had to give it a try. I kept my fingers crossed that the buttermilk would help.
It did, and I’m pleased to say that I’ve finally cracked it. These are tender, light and fluffy. Plus they’re filled with Nutella – I think we’re onto a winner!

Nutella muffins

 

Ingredients
makes 6

110g plain flour
40g wholewheat flour
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch salt
75g sugar
40g butter
1 egg
125ml buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla paste or good extract
3-4 tsp Nutella
extra chocolate to decorate (optional)

Pre-heat the oven to 190°c and line a six hole deep muffin tin with paper cases.

Sift together the two types of flour with the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Whisk in the sugar, cinnamon and salt.
Melt the butter and whisk it together with the egg, buttermilk and vanilla. Now this is the bit that I struggle with every time that I tackle muffin making, add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix it three or four times. I know it looks wrong and there will be little pockets of unmixed flour but if you stir it much more than a few times then you risk over-working the gluten and get tough muffins. No-one wants a tough muffin!
Put a spoonful of mixture into each of the muffin cups. Next pop about 1/2 a teaspoon of glorious scrummy Nutella in the middle of each cup. Finally spoon over the rest of the muffin mixture. It’ll probably reach the top of the paper cases.

Nutella muffins
Bake these for around 20 minutes in the middle of the oven and then place them on a wire rack to cool. They should be nicely browned and feel a little springy to the touch (hopefully). Decorate with a little melted chocolate as a finishing touch if you like.