Monday, March 2, 2015

Salami Cheddar Lentil Muffins #MuffinMonday

Spicy salami, extra sharp cheddar and tender lentils combine to make a delicious savory muffin that’s great for breakfast or lunch, with flavor and protein enough to get you through the day. 

If you’ve never cooked lentils before, you can surely used canned ones for these tasty muffins, but lentils are one of the easiest legumes to cook, taking only about 25-30 minutes and no soaking beforehand. Just add a little salt and cover them amply with water. Bring to the boil and then simmer until tender. Rinse and use how you will. (I save the broth for soups too!) I often make a pot of lentils and then drain them and freeze the little green nuggets of goodness. They are great in salads, soups, muffins and quiches or throw a few in an omelet. I also make a lentil burger that I should share someday. Meanwhile, there are muffins!

2 cups or 250g flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 1/3 oz or 150g extra sharp cheddar cheese
7 slices salami (about 2 1/4 oz or 65g)
1/2 cup or 105g cooked, drained lentils (I like the French Puy lentils.)
3/4 cup or 180ml milk
1/4 cup or 60ml canola or other light oil
2 eggs

Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your 12-cup muffin tin by spraying with non-stick spray or lining with muffin papers. I tend to just use the spray when I’m baking a cheesy muffin, in case the cheese sticks to the paper liners.

Grate your cheddar if it didn’t already come grated and slice your salami into long strips. Set aside a handful of the cheese, a handful of the drained lentils and 12 of the longest salami strips for topping. Chop the rest of the salami up in smaller pieces.

Combine your flour, baking powder, paprika and salt in a large mixing bowl.

Isn't that paprika a fabulous red?!

Add in the smaller pieces of salami, the bigger piles of cheese and lentils and mix well. Use your fingers, if you have to, to separate the pieces of salami from each other.

In another smaller bowl, whisk together your milk, eggs and oil.

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ones and stop when it’s just mixed.

Divide your batter between the 12 muffin cups.

Sprinkle the tops with the reserved cheese and lentils. Roll your long strip of salami up into a spiral and poke it into the top of the muffin batter.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Allow to cool for a few minutes in the pan and then remove to continue cooling on a wire rack.

If you can't stand it, go ahead and cut one open and eat it. They are lovely inside.


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