I adore cherries – especially the yellow variety – and they’re so delicious fresh when perfectly ripe. At the end of the season, if you’ve got past their best or frozen cherries that need pepping up, this recipe for cherry and black pepper streusel muffins via Anna Jones will do the trick. They’re filled with goodness and could even be eaten for breakfast. They have a Summerfruit and vanilla-scented sponge, and the topping is flecked with black pepper and orange zest, adding warmth and spice to the muffins. If you just want to dip your toe into black pepper baking, try this strawberry and black pepper cake from the Everything Looks Rosie archives – it brings out an extra something in the fruit and you won’t look back. To make them, you will need:
For the streusel topping:
50g unsalted butter, cubed
70g white spelt flour
40g raw cane sugar (or you could use coconut sugar like me, or soft brown sugar)
Zest from one unwaxed orange
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper.
For the muffins:
150g unsalted butter or coconut oil
300g white spelt flour, plus 1 tsp
2 tsp baking powder
100g ground almonds
Generous pinch of flaky sea salt
3 free-range eggs (medium)
200g raw cane sugar
200ml milk (dairy, oat or almond)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Juice from one orange
350g pitted cherries, cut into quarters.
(The recipe can easily be thirded or two thirded, the latter of which I did!)
Preheat the oven to 200C/ 180C Fan/ Gas 6. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with cases (or, like me, two smaller ‘bun’ tins). First, prepare the streusel topping. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and rub lightly with your fingers until the mixture resembles rough crumbs. Set aside for later.
Melt the butter and set aside to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, ground almonds and salt and use a balloon whisk to break up any lumps. In another bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until they are a light caramel colour.
Slowly pour in the milk, whisking gently as you go, and then the melted butter, vanilla and orange juice.
Gently whisk the wet ingredients into the flour mixture. Toss the cherries in a teaspoon of flour to stop them all sinking, and fold into the batter.
Fill the cases until just below the top. Sprinkle the streusel topping over the surface of the muffins and bake for 30 minutes.
The tops of the muffins should be golden and a skewer inserted in the middle should come out clean. Leave to cool for about 15 minutes before removing from the tray. Delicious warm!
What are you baking this weekend?