May 16, 2012
Chocolate Ricotta Muffins
In my long term creative goals, I dream of inspiring more people to cook. I still haven't figured out whether I will do this by growing food and teaching classes, sewing colorful items for the kitchen, or getting better at writing and photography centered around food. Still, I imagine someone who rarely makes food from scratch realizing that they are ready to learn to enjoy food by cooking it. They might not feel completely at home in front of the stove, but they are ready to try. In my dream world, it doesn't take much more than a well made apron and a simple recipe to inspire someone to try home cooking.
I would also invite this person to plant or harvest vegetables from my big, lush, someday garden full of an abundance of fruits and vegetables. Once they tasted a salad brightened with leaves of fresh basil and learned to mix up their own vinaigrette, I might suggest some simple baking. I've always loved how little effort it takes to mix up pancake batter or a batch of muffins even on a busy day. I suspect that most of you reading this you are no stranger to home baking (but I'm afraid I don't know you that well so I could be wrong), but I'd like to introduce everyone to the delights of simple baked goods coming out of your own oven.
I know that many muffin recipes have appeared here before, but I had some leftover ricotta and decided to make these which are fluffy and not over the top with chocolate. They do walk a thin line between muffin and cupcake so you can choose to eat them for breakfast or dessert (cream cheese frosting anyone?) but there is no fuss involved in making them and frosting is certainly not necessary.
Chocolate Ricotta Muffins
Adapted from Sunlight Cafe by Mollie Katzen
2 1/3 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
6 rounded tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1 cup sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 1/3 cups mik
1 tablespoon vanilla
4 tablespoons butter, melted
Preheat the oven 400' Whisk together the four, salt, baking powder, cocoa, sugar and chocolate chips. In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta, eggs, milk and vanilla until smooth. Pour the wet ingredients and the melted butter into the dry ingredients. Stir until the wet ingredients are incorporated, a few lumps are okay. Spoon into greased muffin tins. Place muffins in the oven and reduce the heat to 350' Bake for about 20 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean or the muffin springs back when lightly pressed in the middle. Let cool for 10 minutes and remove from muffin tin for further cooling. Makes about 12 muffins.