Wednesday 25 March 2020

Jam Muffins, Rationing and Teatime Rituals ...

These days I'm constantly obsessing about our food stocks, and making things last as long as I can possibly s-t-r-e-t-c-h them out for. At the same time I'm craving comfort foods: things like bacon and barley soup or fish chowder with freshly made bread and lashings of creamy butter.

At the same time it's comforting to follow familiar rituals like afternoon teatime. Normally, when Emi gets in from school, we have a cup of tea together. Sometimes I make fluffy pancakes and other times I make muffins or cookies. He's not going to school at the moment, but it's reassuring to observe the old rituals - like milky tea with freshly baked muffins. It's not much, but it's something to remind us that this lock-down will pass, and normality will return. One day. Soon.

The hand of fortune has provided me with a healthy surplus of black-currant jam. Long story short: I kept making jam with my black currant crop because I didn't want to waste them and I couldn't come up with a better alternative. People seemed to have preferred my raspberry jam - which is long since history and a happy memory, so I find myself left with multiple pots of the other stuff. And in a bid to make use of everything in my larder I've come up with a recipe for 6 jam muffins: that's just about enough for the three of us at tea time. My thinking is that having something fresh from the oven every day is better than a big box of muffins that have lost their sparkle spread over several days. In my little world on lock-down that's what passes for economy of scale.

So, anyway, that's my philosophy, and here's my recipe if you'd like to give them a go:


55 g butter - at room temperature
55 g caster sugar
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoonful of vanilla essence
55 g self-raising flour
2 desert spoonfuls of black-currant jam (or whatever jam you have to hand)


  1. Preheat oven to 160 C (fan)/ 180 C / Gas Mark 4 and put 6 paper cases in a muffin tray ready to go.
  2. Cream the butter and the caster sugar with a beater until pale. Add vanilla essence, egg and jam, and beat until you have a uniform consistency.
  3. Add the flour and mix thoroughly.
  4. Spoon into the paper cases, and bake for approximately 15 minutes until golden and the point at which a skewer comes out clean.
  5. Leave to cool for a few minutes - not to many, though - and enjoy with a nice cup of Rosie Lee.

All the best and stay safe,

Bonny x

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