When I bake, I usually do it on the weekends, when I don’t have to work, but a while ago I was at the office and I got the irrepressible urge to bake something. I only work mornings, so when I got home I still had plenty of time to whip something up. However, I didn’t feel like having to go to the supermarket to buy ingredients, so I set myself a challenge: I had to bake something delicious only using ingredients we still had lying around.
These almond muffins with a cherry filling were so delicious that I made them again a few days after the first batch, just so I could take some pictures and post them on here. I want to share them with the world!
The almond was a last-minute addition and a brilliant one at that. At first, I was just going to bake plain vanilla muffins with a cherry filling, but right before I finished the batter, I thought “why not add some almond flavouring?”. Almond and cherries are a celebrated duo, and they work very well together in these muffins too.
I used canned cherry pie filling for this recipe, as I still had a can left over from a birthday cake I made for my boyfriend. It was the perfect way to use up the cherries and I discovered a great new way to use those types of canned fillings. I feared the almond and the canned cherries would end up tasting too sweet together, but that wasn’t the case. The cherries were just tart enough. So, if you can, make sure you buy canned cherry pie filling that isn’t too sweet.
You’ll need… (for 12 muffins)
- 250 g plain flour
- 150 white caster sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1½ teaspoon baking soda
- 120 ml sunflower oil
- 2 eggs
- 200 ml yoghurt
- 1½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 250 g cherry pie filling (canned)
- optional: almond flakes
- a muffin tin
- optional: paper cases
- and an oven, of course! These muffins need to be baked at 200 °C (don’t forget to preheat your oven!)
So, let’s get baking!
1. Mix the dry ingredients together Firstly, you need to take a large bowl and mix together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Baking powder tends to be a bit lumpy, so I always sieve it above the bowl so it gets distributed evenly throughout the mixture.
2. Mix the wet ingredients together The wet ingredients basically means: everything else. Take a smaller bowl and mix together the sunflower oil, the yoghurt, the vanilla, the almond extract and the eggs until they’re combined.
3. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients Create a little well in the middle of the dry ingredients, and pour in the wet mixture. Use a (wooden) spoon to gently fold everything together. Do not overmix — it is okay to still see little bits of flour. If you overmix the batter, your muffins will turn out too tough.
4. Divide batter over paper cases and add cherries This is where the cherry filling comes in. Divide the paper cases over the muffin tin and scoop a spoonful of batter into a paper case (or in the greased tin if you don’t use paper cases). The case should be no more than halfway filled. Then, use a spoon to place about three canned cherries into the middle of the partially filled paper case. Next, cover up the cherries with more batter. The paper case should end up filled almost to the brim. To decorate, sprinkle some almond flakes over the top. Repeat this process until you’re out of batter (or all of your cases are filled).
5. Bake! Put the muffin tin into your preheated oven and bake the muffins for about 18-20 minutes, or until they’re golden on top and an inserted skewer comes out clean. When they’re done, take the tin out of the oven. Let the muffins cool inside the tin for about 5 to 10 minutes and then take them out and let them cool on a cooling rack.
And that’s it! Enjoy your almond muffins with cherry filling!