I have been known to have breakfast spurts. I go for a couple weeks only eating oatmeal in the mornings (including a great oatmeal bake that I will be posting soon!). Then, I switch to smoothies (green ones, if I’m really feeling ambitious). That, of course, doesn’t last long. So then, I switch to yogurt and granola, which is actually my go-to when it’s warmer outside (I don’t know why – it seems like a perfectly delicious winter breakfast). And then I go back to tea and and an English muffin (maybe with a digestive biscuit or two on the side), because that seems easy and I feel like that was my original breakfast from back in the day, which somehow qualifies it to be the best.
And then, like clockwork, every couple of months, all I want to eat for breakfast (or a snack, or dessert!…or just breakfast), is a muffin. It’s slightly bizarre, actually, because I almost never go for a muffin when they’re part of a breakfast spread. They are almost always too sweet, and too big, and too greasy. But homemade muffins, they just can’t be beat. They’re just a quick portable breakfast that can be eaten cold or warm, and can even be made healthy!
I should say that the original recipe did not call for a glaze. And it certainly didn’t recommend spreading butter on it. But, any cornmeal-based carbohydrate product practically demands to be smeared with butter, so I give myself a pass there. And the glaze, well, we’re in hibernation mode at the moment, it’s really cold outside, and that’s the best excuse I can give about that. And it’s a darn good one.
Orange Corn Muffins (recipe slightly adapted from Taste of Home)
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp. + 1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
zest of 1 orange
crunchy orange glaze, recipe to follow
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray, or line with muffin liners.
In a bowl, whisk together cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, milk, oil and orange zest. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Gently fold together until just combined – do not over mix.
Spoon out and distribute into prepared muffin tin. Bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly golden and a tester comes out clean. While the muffins are baking, prepare the orange glaze.
Let cool in the muffin tin for 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Place a baking sheet under the wire rack to catch the excess glaze.
While still warm, pour the glaze evenly over the muffins. Spoon the excess glaze from the baking sheet and pour over muffins again. Eat warm or let cool completely.
Crunchy Orange Glaze (recipe adapted from David Lebovitz)
1 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup white granulated sugar
zest and juice of 1 orange
Whisk together all ingredients until combined and uniform.