Some time ago I’d seen this blueberry muffin recipe from Paul Hollywood; I was intrigued by the overnight standing time for the batter and wanted to adapt the recipe to see how a gluten free version turned out. I had some blueberries that needed using up and I quite fancied something cakey, so now seemed as good a time as any to try it.
I was also hankering for some lemony frosting, the addition of which may well be the thing that tips this from muffin to cake.
Ultimately, I’m unable to work out where the dividing line comes between a muffin and a cupcake, unwilling to work my way through the fine (and not so fine) detail on the subject that can be found all over the place on the internet, and reluctant to accidentally be drawn into the debate through the misplacement of a name; hence the somewhat unimaginative decision to call them muffin cakes.
Whatever they’re called, they’re delicious – give them a try and I’m sure you’ll agree.
65g golden caster sugar
2 medium eggs, lightly beaten
110g plain gluten free flour mix (I always use Dove’s Farm)
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 hands full of fresh blueberries
For the frosting
35g butter, softened
100g cream cheese
200g icing sugar
1 lemon – finely grate all of the rind and squeeze out about half the juice
Before you start, make sure you’ve allowed for the fact that your batter needs to rest overnight, or at the very minimum for an hour.
Cream butter and sugar together – no need to go as light and fluffy as you would for a regular cupcake.
Slowly beat in the eggs and continue to mix for three minutes. Add vanilla extract.
Fold in flour and baking powder, then cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour, preferably overnight.
You will end up with a really thick, slightly crumbly paste (think pastry just before you draw it together into a ball).
When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to gas mark 6/200°C/400°F.
Line a baking tray with 8 or 9 paper cases.
Place a small spoonful of muffin mixture into each paper case, add three or four blueberries, then top with another small spoonful of the mixture; your cases should be filled to around half way.
Gently press another three or four blueberries into the top of each cake.
Bake in the preheated oven for around 20 minutes or until they’re well risen, golden brown and spring back when gently pressed with a finger.
Remove from tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.
If you want to eat them naked, please do so – still warm is spectacularly good.
If not, keep going and make the frosting…
The cream cheese needs to be very cold, so drain any liquid from the top then pop the pack back into the fridge until you need it.
Your butter needs to be a bit warm and very soft so that it combines properly with the cream cheese in the next stage; beat it until it’s light and soft enough.
Add the cream cheese, most of the lemon rind (keep a little back for decoration) and the juice of half the lemon then beat together until combined. Don’t over beat it as the more you beat the more runny the cream cheese will become.
Sift in half of the icing sugar and lightly beat; add the remaining icing sugar and mix well.
If your mixture is a bit runny, stick the bowl in the fridge for a while and it should firm up.
Pipe swirls on top of your muffin cakes and finish with the reserved lemon zest.
It would be nice if you shared them with friends and family, but I totally understand if you don’t 😉