SMS - Strawberry Muffins with Fresh Lemon and Rosemary along with Gutsy Cooks

Sweet Melissa Sunday's is such a fun group! I love everyone here. I have felt terrible because I am still adjusting to my new work schedule and I seem to be bombing everything else. My kitties don't even know me right now =).

This weekend is my birthday weekend so Larry and I went to the Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert in Seattle Key Arena Saturday afternoon.

We sat close to the bottom row of the arena and towards the back. When fire shot out, we could feel the heat from where we sat. I felt bad for the people towards the front because I know they were cooking. Amazing show! Laser lights, fireworks, flames, hair flinging and the music, Wow! Loved it!
Know what else we loved? The Strawberry, Lemon and Rosemary Muffins! My choice for this week. Rosemary has a distinctive flavor all its' own so I wasn't sure if the flavor would over-power the fruit but we were pleasantly surprised. I am hoping you were too.

Here is Melissa's recipe for the Sweet Muffins with strawberries, lemon zest and Rosemary:
2 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 T. plus 1 t. baking powder
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 t. kosher salt
8 T. (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/3 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 c. heavy cream, at room temperature
1/2 cup minus 2 T. whole milk, at room temperature
(You can use more or less milk according to the juiciness of the fruit)
1 1/2 t. freshly grated zest of a lemon
1 cup strawberries, cut into 1/4 to 1/2 - inch pieces
1 T. vanilla sugar or granulated sugar for sprinkling
(To make vanilla sugar, combine the split and scraped pod and seeds of 1 vanilla bean with 8 cups of sugar. Rub them together with your hands. Store in an airtight container.)
Position a rack in the center of your oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with muffin papers (or butter and flour the cups or spray with nonstick vegetable cooking spray).
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, granulated sugar, and salt. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, and eggs until smooth - -no lumps. Whisk in the heavy cream and milk until combined.

3. Add the lemon zest and 3/4 t. finely chopped fresh rosemary to rub into the flour mixture with your hands, releasing the oils and breaking up the bits. Add the fresh strawberries and gently toss with your fingers to combine. Make a well in the center of the bowl. Pour the butter mixture into the center of the well and, using a rubber spatula, gently pull the flour mixture into
the center of the well until just combined.

4. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, filling each cup until full. Bake for (I bake for 18 to 22 minutes) but Melissa states to bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until golden and a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack and sprinkle with sugar. Let cool to warm.

I sprinkled the vanilla sugar on the muffin dough before inserting into the oven. I also baked 6 LARGE muffins and 13 mini-muffin caps. We loved the flavor and texture.

Too cute! Thank you everyone for baking along with me! I can not wait for next week's Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie!
Check out the rest of the SMS baker's muffins by clicking here for the list of blogs. =)

Gutsy Cooks

I am a whole week behind BUT I wanted to show off the Spanish Vegetable Tortilla and the Cod in Tomato Sauce! Jenn, Monica of Sweetbites co-anchor, chose the month of November's recipes and I "will" catch up.

I LOVED both dishes! The Spanish Vegetable Tortilla was altered a little by me doubling the amount of the broccoli, peas, and adding in 1 cup of sauteed mushrooms. What a delicious tortilla. Mine baked a little darker then the photo in The Illustrated Kitchen Bible but did not taste over cooked. Relief!

Doesn't all the ingredients together look fresh, chunky, and delicious?
My only downside is the filling tasted a little to eggy for us but the rest was perfect!
Then there was the fresh fish, Rockfish to be precise! So good for us and I never get enough fish in my dinner menus for the week. I try but for some reason the idea of fish always slips past me.

LOVED, loved, loved the fresh Roma tomato sauce with sauteed onions, white wine, and seasonings. Would definitely make this again! Thank you Jenn for the great menu choices!


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