Monday, September 06, 2010

Strawberry Lime Polenta Muffins

Strawberry Polenta Muffins (01) by MeetaK  

As a parent, one of the things I absolutely love is experiencing the different stages in my son’s life through his eyes. He’s 8 and often wiser than his age, always with a fairly cool line on his lips for the various situations we come across in our daily life. Soeren’s easy going, casual and rather witty nature makes him quite popular with kids of all ages. The older ones take a liking to him due to his smart perception and the younger ones adore him instantly for his creative and fun attitude.  

When he returns from his adventures his anecdotes keep me amused while I am in the kitchen or photographing and we’ll be constantly giggling or discussing several interesting issues. Being the typical Virgo however, he usually takes forever to think out his stories. There’s no problem with that, but you see his thought process occurs while he actually recounts the stories. One can actually see his train of thought as they develop. His thoughts will often take a detour to make sure we understand each and every aspect of his story and while he sometimes speaks in code (what he and probably other Virgos can only understand), I cannot help but admire the complexity of his mind. For my agile and rather impatient Gemini mind it becomes a tedious practice for me not to usher him along faster and come to the point quicker. As my father is a Virgo too, I’m lucky to have had a lot of practice!

We’ve been through probably all the typical phases a child goes through. The Sesame Street phase, the Eric Carle phase, the nursery rhyme phase, the dinosaur phase, into the soccer phase and now we seem to be entering the so called pre-teen phase.

I am scared!

And totally unprepared for this phase! I was hoping I’d have a few more years before I was thrown out into the wilderness of the pre-teens. But here I am standing in this cage, my knees slightly jittery and with butterflies in my stomach, praying that I come out of this one with flying colors. Especially when I know that this phase is one very long one. 

Strawberry Clear Bowl (01) by MeetaK

His tantrum outbursts are random and the slamming of the doors often unbearable. The talking back often leaves me flabbergasted, although I have to admit more due to the blithe sarcasm, where I often find myself trying to suppress a smile. I usually handle it with a cool collected and sometimes teasing manner. Other times - I explode!

He’s been playing the guitar for the past 4 years now and I love his perception of how music will play a role in his life. One day as we were swimming in one of the stunning Norwegian fjords this summer, Soeren, totally out of the blue explains he does not want to be a “guitar player” when he grows up. Instead, he goes into a long explanation, he enjoys learning the notes and plans on being a person who writes the songs for other people to play. I was stumped! Mainly because I did not expect such consolidated insight from a child of 8.

Where ever his life takes him and through what ever phase we will tackle, I do know that he is standing on a sound and strong foundation. Being the Gemini mum I am, I won’t force my chagrin, but instead give him wings to find his own way and gently guide him to dream his dreams.

Wish me luck!

Strawberry Polenta Muffins (03) by MeetaK

“Strawberries – the last of the season.” I looked down at Soeren and saw him holding a basket full of small red strawberries. With gleaming eyes he handed them to me and I smiled – The last Hurrah - at least for this season.

Adding a bit of zesty lime and some polenta gives these wonderful muffins not only a tangy flavor but a fantastic crusty texture. A great way to indulge in the last strawberries of the season!

 

Strawberry Lime Polenta Muffins

Printable version of recipe here

Ingredients

140g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
85g polenta
140g Muscovado sugar
140g butter, softened
zest of a lime
3 eggs
1 tablespoon milk
150g strawberries, cut 12 into halves and chop remaining into chunks

Frosting

140g icing sugar
3-4 strawberries, chopped into chunks
lime juice

Method

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees C. Line a 12 hole muffin form with paper cases or lightly butter and flour the form.

  2. Cream together butter, sugar and lime zest in a large mixing bowl. The mixture should be pale, fluffy and creamy. Add the polenta and continue to whisk, then add the eggs, one at a time until each one is incorporated.

  3. Sift in the flour and baking powder and using a rubber spatula quickly fold until the batter is thick. Do not worry if it looks lumpy – it’s because of the polenta. Pour in the milk and stir then fold in the strawberry chunks.

  4. Divide the muffin batter into the muffin tin. Bake for approx. 20 minutes or until they are golden and springy to touch. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then turn them out on a wire rack and cool completely.

    At this point the muffins can be stored in air-tight containers for up to 2 days.

  5. For the frosting mash the strawberries to a pulp with the back of a fork. Add a few drops of the lime juice. Push the mixture through a sieve over the icing sugar. Mix the sugar until the mixture is thick and paste-like.

  6. Remove the muffin cases carefully from the muffins, then dip the tops into the batter one at a time and immediately decorate with the reserved strawberry halves. Allow to set and dry.

 


Verdict

Strawberry Polenta Muffins (02) by MeetaK 

Too good to last for long. These muffins are incredibly fruity and I personally love the polenta, which gives the muffins a great yellow hue and a crunchy texture. A delight with every bite. Both of us grab a muffin and sit cross-legged on the floor with my notebook in front of me. We’re putting together our latest compilation on iTunes. There’s some Katie Perry, Shakira, Pink and Lady Gaga. A bit of Hanna Montana, lots of the Jonas Brothers and a-ha. He listens carefully to each song and picks out the ones with distinct guitar sounds and keyboard notes. See he knows already that in 2 to 3 years he wants to tackle the keyboards. It’s what makes a great songwriter!

Last week I was featured in the Indian Press – something that always gets me excited. The News India Times featured me along with a few great fellow Indian bloggers in their article “Cyberspace Spice” for The Indian American. The article also appears in more detail in the print magazine in New York and as soon as I get my copy I’ll share it with you too.

More muffins from WFLH:

image image image

Whole Wheat Granola Goji Muffins

Orange Chocolate Muffins Strawberry Almond Muffins

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2010 Meeta Khurana Wolff unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

38 comments :

  1. Good luck indeed! Haha

    I love that you've used polenta in these muffins, it gives them such a nice colour and texture! They look adorable!

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  2. What a yummilicious combination! They are very tempting.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  3. Delicious muffins Meeta, I wouldn't mind having them for snack right now... but I'm afraid I will have to satisfy myself with cornflakes & rhubarb yogurt :)

    Good luck, being parent of 8 year old is not easy and require lots of patience. I still have 3 years before Marissa reach this age but when my step son came to live with us, he was 9... I was completely unprepared and terrible in solving growing every day problems. Now few years after we live almost in "harmony" but it wasn't really easy to get to this stage...

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  4. Wow, I had no idea those are virgo characteristics! As a virgo myself, this is a bit wird, but makes sense: I always catch myself going through detour storytelling... hmmm! I love the little snippets of wisdom from your son, but, it doesn't surprise me, he must be growing up in a very nurturing and encouraging environment. Happy september, and happy birthday to Soeren!

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  5. Get ready for the fun ride with your son. I am experiencing two teenagers at the moment. Am I ready for it? No, not at all.
    Congratulations on being featured at the "Indian Press". How exciting.
    Beautiful pictures of your muffins. They look so delicious.

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  6. What a delicious combo! Loved the pictures :-)

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  7. I sure hope Soeren does not behave as badly as I did in my pre-teens and teens! Lol... Obviously I did not think I was misbehaving at the time...:) but with a mum like you I am sure you're gonna be fine!!
    Those muffins look delicious!!

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  8. Meeta - I have 2 girls, 1 pre-teen and one well into teens. They say boys are physical, girls are mental...and some of the sibling rivalry and sarcasm (where did they get that from?!) is mind-blowing. However, I try to really enjoy the moments when you see the adults they are becoming...good company, great sense of humour, intelligent comments. Good luck! (Great muffins)

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  9. The flavours sound delicious! And goodluck with those pre-teen years, I hear they're tough. :-)

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  10. Ooooh, yum, I had polenta muffins in mind for this week, how lucky am I to be inspired by the famous Meeta!!

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  11. Ha Ha Ha! Good luck and be lucky there is only one son to deal with. I am finally pulling out of the adolescent stage with both of mine and thank heavens! And the sarcasm and tantrums go on. But I am also amazed at what smart, handsome, generous, creative human beings they have become. And I'm not surprised that Soeren is like he is - he takes after his mom!

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  12. I think you have always a close retationship with soreen as my sister's son is so lose to her, i guess sons are more attached to their moms. Love that he is lerning guitar and even if he don't hwant to do professionaly the guitar playing will be there for whole is lofe. %ydaughter plays violin from a young age and the music has helped her a lot through her teenage years, i know when she plays her piece if she is upset or in a good mood.
    Here the strawberry season id iver too, but tehre are still some hanging around in shops though.

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  13. Oh Meeta, I have an 8 year old son, not much older than your 8 year old son, and I so relate to what you're saying!

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  14. if you need advice, ask me and Ilva. I have been taking care of my teen sister ==> headache!

    But hey, we can all relax with these muffins. Yum!

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  15. Meeta, it has been a while following your blog and I never left a comment (sorry!=(, I am always in a rush!
    But today I couldn't help myself but write because the love you put in this post astonished me..I am looking forward to be a mother and feel the same as you did, writing these lines!
    Hugs

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  16. All the best with raising a pre teen Meeta...Its a perfect timing for me..I was looking for a recipe that uses polenta...BTW is that white with red stripes cloth from IKEA..I have the exact same one ;-)(Im a Gemini too LOL)...

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  17. Soeren sounds delightful, and if it's any consolation, I've got a tween too (almost 8), who slams doors and talks back! She's also quite the expert at eye-rolling :) Sigh, I thought they only did that when they were 13.

    Enjoy each and every stage and you are one fabulous mama! The muffins look fab too.

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  18. What a lovely post Meeta :) Soeren is going to be a heartbreaker just you watch hehe.. and congrats on the coverage! xx

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  19. I love how you interpret your son's nature through astrology; I find myself doing it too but I am afraid to admit it!
    Love that muffin with the crunch of the polenta, the tanginess of lime and the sweetness of strawberries. Always impeccable photos too.

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  20. Your parenting stories are very interesting Meeta...Soeren does sound wise beyond his years...nothing wrong with that! Love the muffins too...especially the addition of polenta!

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  21. These look terrific! I will miss strawberries this winter... thankfully we have lots of culinary delights to look forward to.

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  22. Congrats on being featured in the News India Times!
    Too bad summer's almost over here and there aren't any more strawberries :(

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  23. What an awesome idea! I just got a big bushel of strawberries and have been trying to decide what to do with them. Hmmm :)

    Sues

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  24. It looks great! it must be delicious!
    Beata from
    lubie.gotowac.com

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  25. Thanks so much for all your lovely comments! they mean a lot. also thank you for your wishes and pacifying me! i think we'll make it ;o) glad you are all liking the polenta in the muffin too.

    Pinedda - nice to see you out yourself here :o) and touched that you liked this post! hope to hear from you more often!

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  26. wow, I love polenta and I`m going to make these muffins soon :) thanks for sharing!

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  27. I have been craving Ottolenghi lemon polenta cake for a reaaallly long time and then i saw this, not good. You tease me Meeta! These are gorgeous. and strawberries i love :D x

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  28. Strawberries and lime? Damn you

    The addition of polenta has single handedly guaranteed my waist increasing in size by a factor of 3.

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  29. These look gorgeous. I love that you used polenta. Very nice option. I cant wait to try it. YUMM!

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  30. These look so pretty. I don't like to think of my little boy being too big to pick up never mind being a teenager. I'm dreading him not letting me cuddle him anymore!

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  31. I love the use of polenta in baking sweets and just wanting to share a little irony - while you were sharing an example that celebrates the end of summer, I just blogged about a polenta cake perfect to welcome in the fall :) But I may have to back up and enjoy summer a little more with some strawberries and limes, since that's such a delicious combination.

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  32. Muffins are my weakness and I am happy to get such an excellent recipe...I don't know if I can prepare it but I will surely try this tonight.

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  33. Love the colour of the icing topped with the strawberry. And its great to use polenta :)

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  34. what a beautiful post. I have no children but i did teach teenagers and they can be an interesting mix. However, you always deal with extremes. i do believe you will come out at the other end in style. and these muffins are just so lovely. I love baking with polenta but your post reminded me that i have not done it at all this year.

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Thank you for visiting What's For Lunch, Honey? and taking time to browse through my recipes, listen to my ramblings and enjoy my photographs. I appreciate all your comments, feedback and input. I will answer your questions to my best knowledge and respond to your comments as soon as possible.

In the meantime I hope you enjoy your stay here and that I was able to make this an experience for your senses.

Hugs
Meeta