15 September, 2010

Peel Me a Grape

There are times in the kitchen where experimentation fails in a colossal way (note to self: stay away from the curry) and other times where a little 'why not?' turns into 'why have I never?' With a pile of Coronation grapes being snubbed by The Monster I needed that why not.

Why not put grapes in muffins? We put raspberries, peaches, apples, and even pineapple in muffins, so why not grapes? You really don't see it much though. And I'm not sure why.

Hopefully, after you see these muffins you will change your mind. There was some Twitter chatter about this a day after I made the muffins, with Jennie going all out to seed her Concord grapes.  I am far too lazy for that, so thank goodness the Coronation grapes are seedless. 

The base for this recipe is my basic muffin recipe (find it here) with some grapes and roasted, skinned, and chopped hazelnuts added in. With the the girls I have much better luck with muffins when I bake the mini kind. Mama doesn't like that because I eat a lot more that way! This recipe will make 12 regular sized muffins or 24 mini muffins.

Grape and Hazelnut Muffins

1 cup hazelnuts
1 3/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup small grapes (I used Coronation)
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp vanilla

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a muffin tin with non-stick spray or grease with butter.
2. Roast the hazelnuts (unless already roasted) in the oven on a cookie sheet.  Roast for 10-15 minutes, giving the pan a shake every now and then. Be careful not to burn them. Pour them into a clean kitchen towel. Wrap it up loosely and rub the nuts with the towel. The skins should come off easily. Don't worry if not every bit of skin comes off. Aim for most of it. Le the hazelnuts cool while you assemble the rest of the ingredients.
3. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Combine the egg, milk, oil, and vanilla in another bowl.
4. Chop the hazelnuts coarsely, on the smaller side, but don't worry about any larger chunks.
5. Toss the chopped hazelnuts and grapes with the dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.
6. Scoop into prepared muffin tin and bake for 15-20 minutes, until tops are rounded and golden.


Roving Lemon said...

I wonder why it's so rare to see grapes in baking? I found myself overwhelmed with grapes a few years back and I made grape crumble for a company dinner. Delicious and unprecedented! Maybe it's time for another grape-baking session, now that I've got a voracious grape-eater on hand.

Fareen said...

These muffins look so good! I'm going to have to try this recipe out on the weekend!