Breakfast Club

Saturday morning, I was faced with a classic farmer's market dilemma: Raspberries were on sale -- 2 half pints for $5 -- but would I be able to use them before they turned to mush? The humidity already pushed them one step closer to raspberry puree, so I would have to act fast.

raspberry corn muffins
Raspberry-corn muffins. (Kim O'Donnel)

As I stood in line waiting to pay, my mind raced over the various damaged razzie possibilities. A vinaigrette would be nice, but I was hankering for coffee and a carb. That's it. I would make muffins.

On the drive home, I remembered the tried-and-true-ability of "The Best Quick Breads" by bread guru Beth Hensperger. I peeled through my batter-stained pages and sure enough, there was something I could do with raspberries and a muffin tin.

From start to finish, these lovelies take an hour, and they stay moist (if wrapped in plastic) for a few days. If you're lucky enough to win the raspberry lotto, this is one delicious way to spend the bounty.

Raspberry Cornmeal Muffins
Adapted from "The Best Quick Breads" by Beth Hensperger

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup fine-grind yellow cornmeal (preferably stone ground)
2/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest of 1 lemon, finely chopped
1 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups red or golden raspberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. With an oil spray, grease muffin cups of a 9-12 cup muffin tray. Place paper liners in each cup, greasing them as well.

In a large bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and zest.

In another bowl, beat milk, eggs, oil and vanilla extract with a whisk for 1 minute. Pour wet ingredients into dry and stir with a large spatula until moistened, using no more than 15-20 strokes. Gently fold in raspberries, taking care not to break them up. Batter will be lumpy.

Spoon batter into each paper-lined muffin cup until just level with top of the pan. Bake in center of the oven until tops are browned and feel dry and springy, and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Do not overbake.

Let muffins rest in pan for 5 minutes before turning them out onto a rack to cool. Serve immediately or freeze in plastic bags for up to 3 months.

Makes 9-12 muffins

By Kim ODonnel |  July 17, 2006; 10:29 PM ET Breakfast
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I cant seem to find your e-mail address so we will try this--may I subsititue peaches for the rasberries? Lots of peaches at home and this may be the perfect treat to bring to the office tomorrow. You are my cooking inspiration, thank you!!

Posted by: Alison | July 18, 2006 2:07 PM

Hi Alison, I think peaches would be fine here. Might add a little nutmeg to the mix. Slice peaches into small pieces. Let me know how it goes.

Posted by: Kim O'Donnel | July 18, 2006 4:13 PM

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