Guest post: Brette Sember, The Muffin Tin Cookbook
Just in time for Easter, Brette Sember, shares some recipe ideas for making much more than sweets and sides in your muffin tins–you can make your whole meal! Thanks Brette, and make sure to check out her newly released The Muffin Tin Cookbook for more recipes.
Easter in a Muffin Tin
After the baskets have been found, eggs have been hunted, and chocolate has been consumed (or at least the ears bitten off), it’s time for Easter brunch. By the time I get through the festivities of the morning, I want something simple and delicious, and I’m thrilled if it’s a dish my kids want to help make. This Easter, I’m going to be cooking brunch in muffin tins. Muffin tins are my new go-to kitchen cooking item. Your muffin tins can do much more than just cupcakes and muffins! This versatile pan can be used to make entrees, appetizers, breakfasts, sides, breads, desserts, and much more.
One at a Time
Muffin tins are a handy way to cook a variety of dishes easily, but are also a great way to manage portion control. You can’t fool yourself by saying you’ll just have a little more—one “muffin” cup is one portion. Muffin tin cooking is easy to serve too. You can bring the whole tin to the table (cute if you have a blue stoneware muffin tin), or arrange the cups on a plate. Perfect for Easter brunch are the pretty cupcake “trees” you can buy; display your brunch delectables this way.
Muffin tin cooking is a great way to get your kids interested in cooking and eating healthy foods. They love choosing the liners, arranging food in the cups, and seeing the transformation when it comes out of the oven. There’s something about food that is round, small, and perfectly shaped that appeals to kids. They’ve been conditioned to believe that anything served in a cupcake liner is fun and delicious, so they’ll be willing to try many new foods this way. Since Easter is already a day filled with surprises and the unexpected, build on this excitement by serving up brunch gorgeous muffin tin cups.
Variety Makes Muffin Tin Cooking Fun
There are so many types of muffin tins available now. Not only can you buy cast iron, nonstick, and silicone tins, but they come in so many sizes: regular, jumbo, mini, and even in squares now. Everyone grew up with paper muffin cup liners, but today there are many choices in that realm as well. You can buy colored or patterned paper liners, foil-lined paper liners, and reusable silicone liners. The reusables are my favorite because not only are they nonstick, colorful, and green, but you can even use them by themselves on a baking sheet without a muffin tin pan. You can even use things like slices of ham, tortillas, and pie crust as your cup liners, for tasty results.
Ham and Egg Cups
Makes 1 (make 1-2 cups per person at your table)
1 slice round or oval deli ham
Salt and pepper, to taste
½ tablespoon shaved Parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Prepare 1 regular muffin cup by spraying it or using a muffin cup liner.
- Place the center of the ham into the middle of the cup, and arrange the edges along the inside of the cup. If it sticks up a bit above the cup, that’s fine.
- Crack the egg, and place it inside the ham.
- Season with salt and pepper, and add the cheese.
- Bake for 15 minutes, until the white of the egg is set.
Buckwheat Pear Muffins with Glaze
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons skim milk
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup buckwheat flour
½ cup flour
1 pear, peeled, cored and chopped (about 1 cup)
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Glaze (recipe below)
- Preheat oven to 400°F, and prepare 12 regular muffin cups by spraying with cooking spray.
- Mix egg, milk, oil and sugar, then add dry ingredients.
- Stir in pear and spices.
- Divide among muffin cups and bake for about 16 minutes. Drizzle with glaze if desired.
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon milk
- Completely combine in a bowl, then drizzle over the tops of the muffins. Serve.
Along with The Muffin Tin Cookbook, Brette is also the author of The Parchment Paper Cookbook and The Organized Kitchen. Her web site is BretteSember.com and she blogs at MarthaAndMe.net and NoPotCooking.com.