Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Lunchbox #16

Today's lunchbox:

Morning Tea: Mixed grapes and two sorts of savoury mini muffin - 1.Curried cheese, chive and corn
2. Kalamata olive, feta and italian herbs

Lunch: Homemade spiced fruit loaf fingers with cream cheese filling, cherry tomatos, carrot stars and celery pieces

The spiced fruit loaf is made in our breadmaker - I have substituted the usual "mixed fruit and glace cherries" for our own mix of fruits - organic sultanas and prunes, homemade candied orange and lemon peel pieces (my mum makes those and they are much, much nicer than the stuff in bought mixed fruit) and uncrystallised preserved sweet ginger pieces.  If you don't have a bread maker, an internet search for fruit bread recipes is sure to turn up one you like and you can substitute your own favourite mix of dried fruits.  Or simply buy a good quality raisin bread loaf from the store!!  It's delicious toasted for breakfast too.

And here is the muffin recipe - it's one of my absolute favourite recipes and is also my mum's - I have absolutely no idea where she got it from, though some sort of baking workshop way back in the '90's seems to ring a bell.

It's the best ever recipe because it's a really simple base recipe which you can then choose to make sweet or savoury and the add-ins are limited only by your tastebuds and imagination. I simply divided the base recipe in half once it was made and mixed two seperate flavour combinations through.  To give you an idea of amounts, I used 1 tspn of curry, 1/2 a tblspn of fresh chives, a 125g can of drained corn kernels and about 1/3 cup cheddar cheese in the curried cheese, chive and corn muffins.  The olive, feta and italian herbs took 7 chopped olives, about 2 tblspns of chopped feta, and fresh, very finely chopped herbs - 1 tblspn parsley, 1 tblspn oregano, 1/2 tblspn rosemary.  Remember, these amounts are for mixing into batter halves, if you wanted to do just a one flavour batter, you'd double the amount of your chosen add-in combination.

Miss Six calls my mum "Nonna" so here is...

Nonna Lillabilly's Awesomely Versatile Muffins

2 cups self raising flour
1/4 cup caster sugar (ONLY if you are making sweet muffins, leave out for savoury)
1/2 tspn salt
1 tspn baking powder
1 cup full cream milk
1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 egg (I use jumbo size)

Your choice of "add-ins" - (see ideas at end of recipe)

1. Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl, add salt and sugar (if using) and mix.
2. Combine milk, oil and egg with a fork in a seperate jug
3. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix lightly with a fork - do NOT beat or over mix, the batter is supposed to be lumpy.  ( If you over-mix you'll end up with tough muffins!)
4. Lightly mix in your choice of add-ins.  Use your judgement for how much to add - remember there needs to be more batter than add-in if muffins are to rise well.
5. Spray muffin tin with spray oil or grease with butter or use paper muffin-cases.  Divide batter evenly into muffin tin.
6. Bake in preheated 180 deg celcius oven for 15-20 minutes (8-10 minutes for mini muffins) until golden.  Cool in tin for a minute or so before turning out to cool on wire rack.

Add-In Ideas - Savoury
Cheese, bacon, corn and herbs
Salmon, dill and brie
Spinich and feta
Pizza (ham, cheese, onion, olives, tomato)
Greek (feta, olives, sundried tomato, red onion)

Add-In Ideas - Sweet
Apple and cinnamon
Blueberry and raspberry (you can use frozen if not in season)
Cherry, coconut and dark chocolate
Date and pecan
Banana and milk choc chips
Ginger and macadamia

Hope you enjoy the recipe, I can't wait to hear what flavour combinations you all come up with - please share!!

Have a great weekend, y'all!


  1. That muffin recipe looks very similar to the one I have. I was leaving Melbourne (and thus my old job) and thought I wouldn't be able to LIVE without the muffins I used to indulge in occasionally with my coffee from Stellini in Little Collins St near my office. So I asked them for the recipe (which I thought was a bit cheeky) but they were happy to oblige and it makes perfect, light and luscious muffins every time. I usually chose a fruit and a nut to add in. Apple walnut, raspberry almond, banana pecan...

  2. That is one yummy looking lunchbox. Thanks for the muffin recipe and ideas. Have a great weekend!

  3. Love the muffin recipe - I will have to make up a batch - the hardest part will be deciding which combination to use!