There’s no better way to start the day than with scrumptious, homemade strawberry muffins, still warm from the oven. These easy muffins are the stuff that dreams are made of. They’re mildly sweet and chock full of ripe strawberries, with just a hint of fragrant orange.
That’s why supermarkets and bakeries are overflowing with them. There are hundreds of varieties and flavours of muffins on the market.
However, mass-produced muffins frequently fall short. Often enough, they’re too sweet, or too moist, or too cakey.
Moreover, commercial muffins can be way too large to be healthy — or to be finished. They are certainly a far cry from the homemade muffins our mothers and grandmothers made.
If you think about it, there’s little reason to buy muffins. Homemade muffins are very easy to make, and take under an hour from start to finish. What’s more, most of that time is spent in the oven!
So, I’m always delighted when I traipse across a book that reminds me how easy it is to make the homemade foods I loved as a child. Southern Country Cooking from the Loveless Café by Jane and Michael Stern is just such a book! It’s jam-packed with easy recipes for good old-fashioned home cooking.
About the Book
Southern Country Cooking from the Loveless Café is much more than a simple cookbook. It’s also a virtual trip to one of Nashville’s most iconic destinations for homemade, Southern food.
Jane and Michael Stern’s book walks you through the history of the Loveless Café, which has had several incarnations, and has still managed to stand the test of time. Better yet, they introduce you to many of the people who make the restaurant special. You get to know the creators and custodians of the Loveless Café’s recipes and traditions.
Reading Southern Country Cooking from the Loveless Café is an invitation to join the Loveless Café’s extended family. Moreover, the personal stories of those who make the Loveless special give the delicious recipes context which makes them so much more meaningful.
The recipes include Southern classics such as Hoe Cakes, Fried Chicken, and Chow-Chow. However, they also contain some newer recipes that are bound to become family favourites, such as Turtle Squares and Peach Dressing.
Whether you grew up in the South, as I did, or are just curious about Southern cooking, this book is for you. It will either, take you on a long walk down memory lane and help you introduce your family to the foods you grew up on, or hold your hand as you explore delicious, Southern hospitality.
About the Recipe
Of the many recipes in this book, I chose to share the recipe for strawberry muffins because it took me straight back to my childhood. I have vivid memories of strawberry picking and eating, until the juices ran down my chin and stained my clothes. Those sweet, ripe berries, still warm from the sun, are the stuff dreams are made of.
In the South, early summer is defined by the strawberry season. So, there are many recipes for jams, cakes, muffins, frostings, and more. However, strawberry recipes I’ve found online often feature boxed mixes, puddings, and other ingredients we certainly never used at home.
This recipe is the first I’ve seen that hones to my childhood memories. Just straightforward, all-natural ingredients — and plenty of strawberries. The muffins are delicious. Your first bite will transport you through the crackly muffin top into a cloud of strawberry goodness. In my estimation, it doesn’t get any better!
I hope your family enjoys this recipe every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!
Strawberry Muffins, A Recipe from Southern Country Cooking from the Loveless Café
These delicious strawberry muffins from Nashville's iconic Loveless Café will take you straight back to your childhood. The crisp muffin caps give way to a cloud of strawberry, orange goodness and the taste of yesteryear!
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 1/4 plus 1/4 cups sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- zest of 1/2 orange
- 2 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup roughly chopped strawberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- Step 1 Preheat the oven to 375° F (190° C).
- Step 2 Whisk the butter, 1 1/4 cups sugar, salt, eggs, vanilla, and orange zest together in a bowl.
- Step 3 Sift the flour, baking powder, nutmeg, and cinnamon over the butter mix. Add the berries to the flour mix and gently fold a few times. Add the buttermilk and gently mix together.
- Step 4 Scoop out the dough into paper-lined muffin pans. Will make six Texas-size muffins or twelve standard muffins.
- Step 5 Combine the remaining 2 tablespoons cinnamon with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and sprinkle on top of the muffins. Bake for 20 to 35 minutes, depending on the size of the muffins.
Taken from Southern Country Cooking from the Loveless Café, Fried Chicken, Hams, and Jams from Nashville’s Favorite Cafe by Jane and Michael Stern Copyright © 2005 by Jane and Michael Stern, and Loveless Café, LLC. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson. www.thomasnelson.com
This divine cookbook is available globally in both ebook and standard format from Amazon.com.