19 February, 2011

Chocolate muffins with orange cream cheese

The internet has been a great place from which I draw my inspiration from, be it craft, food, child rearing or decorations.  But it has also meant that I've ended up buying things in the hope that one day, I'll find the time to create whatever it was that I was inspired to make.  As we all know, that may be almost never.  It's fine with craft materials but with food, there are expiry dates.
In order to assuage my conscience, I did a sweep of the pantry for any more food that needed to be consumed (This is becoming quite a habit, yes?  Remember the black sesame soup?)  Anyhow, I found a packet of cooking chocolate, baking cocoa powder, half consumed cream cheese and an orange.  Perfect to execute an idea that I've been having in my head for quite a while - Chocolate muffins with orange cream cheese.

I'm quite sure this is not a new idea - I'm not that imaginative in the food department yet.  And by yet, I mean that I expect to become more adventurous.  And by more adventurous, I mean buy more exotic ingredients... (Down that slippery slope yet again.) 

As a child, I'd always hated orange flavored chocolates.  Don't get me wrong - I LOVED chocolate and I LOVED oranges but put them together, it was just wierd.  I suppose part of the reason was the rather synthetic taste that those cheap boxes of chocolates tend to impart with this combination.  But now that I've grown up and I've actually tried some really nice combinations with fresh fruit and good quality chocolate, I'm quite partial towards it.
Do you have any combinations of food that you hated as a child but embraced it as an adult?

Chocolate muffins with orange cream cheese
Makes 18 muffins
Group A
2 3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup baking cocoa powder
0.5 cup caster sugar
Group B
2 tsp vanilla essence
80g milk chocolate chips / chocolate bar broken up into bits
2 large eggs
150g melted butter
1 3/4 cups of milk
Group C
125g cream cheese at room temperature
2 tbs caster sugar
3 tbs fresh orange juice
1.5 tbs orange zest
0.5 tsp vanilla essence
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in Group A and whisk to mix.
  3. Combine all the ingredients in Group B and whisk to mix.
  4. Pour Group B ingredients into Group A ingredients and stir until just combined.
  5. Combine all the ingredients in Group C and put in a food processor and blend until smooth.
  6. Fill greased muffin tins until 1/2 full with the chocolate mixture.
  7. Place a dollop of cream cheese mixture on top of the chocolate mixture.
  8. Further top up the muffin tinx with the chocolate mixture to cover the cream cheese mixture.
  9. Bake for 20 - 30 minutes.
  10. Best eaten warm from the oven!
  1. I tend to use less sugar in my recipes as I dont' like it too sweet - you can vary the amount of sugar to your liking,
  2. You may need less milk (or more) to get a consistency thicker than honey to allow for ease in filling the muffin tins.

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