I absolutely adore cinnamon (despite spending the first 22 years or so of my life hating it) so when Choclette chose it as this month’s We Should Cocoa challenge ingredient it should have been easy for me to think of things to bake.
In a way it was, I had plenty of ideas, but things have been a bit manic in my kitchen recently, what with making Christmas gifts, food for parties and catering to the pony’s rather specific needs (quick to eat breakfasts and bars he can take to work), so finding a way of squeezing cinnamon in was actually harder than I expected.
Attempt one was cinnamon chocolate shortbread, which was a disaster, but attempt two, these Nutella-filled cinnamon sugar muffins, was a resounding success.
I’m aware my last post also featured both muffins and Nutella, but who cares because it’s a great combination.
The Nutella is baked into the centre, so when you eat one warm you get a lovely melty surprise when you bit into it, and the tops are brushed with melted butter and rolled in cinnamon sugar which make them a lot like cinnamon sugar doughnuts – basically, finger-lickingly irresistible.
Even the pony, despite claiming not to like cinnamon, has been happily having two a day for breakfast, which I put down to Nutella’s having the baking equivalent of the Midas touch – it just makes everything into food gold!
Nutella-filled cinnamon sugar muffins (recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction)
- 70g butter
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or extract)
- 125ml semi-skimmed milk
- 180g plain flour
- 1.5 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- pinch nutmeg
- pinch salt
- 8 tsp Nutella (about 50g)
For the topping:
- 25g butter, melted
- 35g caster sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
Beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then add in the egg and vanilla followed by the milk, beating until you have a smooth, fairly liquid batter. Sift together the remaining dry ingredients, then fold into the batter gently until no white flour bits remain.
Butter and flour 8 holes of a muffin tray, then drop a good tablespoon of cake batter into each. Place a teaspoon of Nutella in the centre of each muffin, then finish by dividing the remaining cake batter between the cops, completely covering the Nutella. Bake at 200 degrees for 5 minutes, then drop down to 170 degrees and cook for a further 15-20 minutes, or until the muffins are well risen, golden and springy to the touch.
Transfer to a wire rack as son as they’re cool enough to handle – it’s easier to get them out of the tin that way. Brush the tops with melted butter, then mix the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and roll the muffin tops in it to coat. Eat while warm, or leave to cool and pop in the microwave for a few seconds before serving.