Cindy Mushet has been a pastry chef and culinary instructor for nearly 20 years,
beginning her career at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA. She has since headed pastry
kitchens in restaurants and bakeries from Napa to San Diego, and has taught professional
training courses at Le Cordon Bleu, the Culinary Institute of America, and the New School
of Cooking, among others. She has also taught hundreds of recreational classes across the country.
For five years she wrote and published the highly regarded "Baking With the American Harvest,"
a quarterly baking journal with subscribers nationwide. She also is the author of Desserts:
Mediterranean Flavors, California Style and was a contributing writer to The Joy of Cooking,
The Joy of Cooking Christmas Cookies, and The Baker's Dozen Cookbook. Cindy's recipes and articles
have been featured in magazines and newspapers across the country, including Bon Appétit, Fine Cooking,
Gourmet, Country Home, and The New York Times. In addition, her recipes were among the few to be chosen
for The Best American Recipe books.
For a detailed description & pricing info click here.
The Art and Soul of Baking guides readers through the world of baking, where alluring aromas of chocolate, vanilla, and cinnamon fill the air and tempt the palate. Culinary authority Sur La Table teams with professional pastry chef and baking instructor Cindy Mushet to create the ultimate book for bakers.
From tantalizing tarts, decadent cakes, and delicious cookies, to more complex creations like crusty breads and flaky pastries, to melt-in-your-mouth
Feta, Roasted Pepper, and Basil Muffins
MAKES 12 MUFFINS
Who says muffins have to be sweet? These are a great savory accompaniment to eggs or bacon on the breakfast table,
and just as good alongside soup, salad, or roasted chicken. Do not substitute dried basil, because it just doesn't
have the punch of flavor these muffins require. If fresh basil is unavailable, substitute a tablespoon of fresh
thyme or a teaspoon of dried thyme instead.
2 cups (10 ounces) unbleached
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup (3 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
½ cup (4 ounces) jarred roasted
red bell pepper, patted dry and chopped into ¼-inch dice
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
1 cup (8 ounces) buttermilk
¼ cup (2 ounces) olive oil
1 large egg
Standard 12-Cup Muffin Tin, Whisk,
Large Bowl, Medium Bowl, 2-Cup Liquid
Measuring Cup, Silicone or Rubber Spatula,
Large Ice Cream Scoop or Two Soup
Spoons, Parchment Paper, Thin Knife or
Spatula, Cooling Rack
WHAT THE PROS KNOW
To use parchment
in the muffin pan
instead of the traditional pleated
paper muffin liners, cut twelve 5 by
5-inch squares of parchment. Fit
one into each muffin cup in the pan,
pleating the sides slightly where they
overlap so they lay flat against the
pan walls. The parchment will extend
above the top of the muffin cup. Put
a spoonful of muffin batter into each
liner to anchor it in the pan. Adjust
each paper, as necessary so they are
centered and even. Finish filling with
the muffin batter. Bake as directed.
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and position an oven rack in the center. Lightly coat the
muffin tin with melted buter, oil, or high-heat canola-oil spray. Whisk the flour, baking
powder, baking soda, and salt in the large mixing bowl. Set aside. In the medium bowl, stir
together the feta cheese, roasted bell pepper, and chopped basil. Set aside.
2. Pour the buttermilk into the measuring cup. Add the olive oil and the egg and whisk
together until well blended. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour the
buttermilk mixture into the well and stir gently with a spatula. Mix only until there are no
more streaks of flour or pools of liquid and the batter looks fairly smooth. A few small lumps
scattered throughout are fine—they will disappear during baking. Gently fold in the feta
cheese mixture until evenly distributed in the batter.
3. Use the large ice cream scoop or 2 soup spoons to divide the batter evenly among the
prepared muffin cups. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until the tops feel firm and a skewer
inserted into the centers comes out clean. Transfer the muffin tin to a rack and let cool for
5 minutes. Gently run a thin knife or spatula around each muffin to free it from the pan,
lift out the muffins, and transfer them to a rack to finish cooling (careful, these are tender
while hot). Serve warm.
STORING When completely cool, the muffins can be stored at room temperature, wrapped
in plastic or sealed in a resealable plastic bag, for 2 days. Reheat, wrapped in foil, in a
325°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until warmed through.
The muffins can also be frozen for up to 1 month, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and
then sealed in a resealable plastic freezer bag. Thaw, still wrapped, for 30 minutes before
Copyright © 2008 by Cindy Mushet. Reprinted from The Art & Soul of Baking
with permission from Andrews McMeel Publishing.
to download this recipe.
Also by Cindy Mushet: