I have been learning to cook for about a year now, and, though my hob-top skills leave a little to be desired, I do love to bake cakes and biscuits. I've started to experiment with my own recipes now, and when Geek-Features requested a Black Forest gateau, I decided to do something a little different. I broke from tradition and made Black Forest muffins instead!
If you would like to try them yourselves, here is my recipe:
Black Forest Muffins (Makes 12)
225g/8oz Plain White Flour
55g/2oz Cocoa Powder
1 tbsp Baking Powder
Pinch of Salt
115g/4oz Caster Sugar
200g/7oz Dark Chocolate, roughly chopped
200g/7oz Morello Cherries, frozen or fresh
2 Medium Eggs
250ml/9fl oz Milk
6 tbsp Sunflower Oil
Oil/Butter for greasing or 12 Muffin Cases
85g/3oz Butter, softened
175g/6oz Icing Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla Essence
Dark Chocolate, grated
1. Preheat oven to 200'C/400'F. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin or line with paper cases.
2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar, dark chocolate chunks and cherries.
3. Lightly beat the eggs in another bowl, then beat in the milk and oil.
4. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the beaten liquid ingredients. This is why you needed a large bowl, there are a lot of chocolate chunks and cherries in there!
5. Stir gently until they are just combined, don't over-mix.
6. Spoon the mixture into the muffin tin. Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes, until well risen and firm to the touch, and a skewer inserted into a muffin comes out clean (well, clean apart from gooey melted chocolate!).
7. Leave the muffins to cool on a wire rack, resist temptation to scoff one down immediately.
8. Make the buttercream topping by beating together the softened butter, vanilla essence and icing sugar in a bowl until creamy and stiff. Spoon or pipe the buttercream onto the fully cooled muffins.
9. Sprinkle grated dark chocolate over the tops and consume!
I chose to use buttercream instead of fresh cream as the topping so that it keeps for a little longer, there just being the two of us, and because I adore buttercream. If the muffins are going to be eaten quickly then fresh whipped cream would work just as well. I am quite proud of these muffins, they are so very tasty!
Here are a couple more photos taken during the cooking process. I am not the best photographer and I tend to bake at night time when I need the flash, but I hope that you enjoy them.