muffin batter question
  Re: (...)
I invited the inlaws for brunch tomorrow and want to make cranberry muffins. With my back still pretty sore, I am trying to prepare as much ahead as possible and was wondering if anyone knows if I can make the batter today, store in the fridge, and then bake tomorrow morning. I don't know enough about the chemistry of baking soda, baking powder, etc to know if this is a bad idea.

Everything tastes better Alfresco!
  Re: muffin batter question by chef_Tab (I invited the inlaws...)
I would guess yes, but like you, I don't know the chemistry nor have I tried this. Hopefully, someone with more baking experience will come on.
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: muffin batter question by chef_Tab (I invited the inlaws...)
I've often made them ahead of time and I follow this procedure:

"You can prepare muffin batter ahead of time. I'm not sure I would want to leave a batter with whole, uncooked eggs too long, but you should be safe if you are using fresh eggs and you cook the batter within48 hours.

Because some of the carbon dioxide bubbles that make the muffins rise when cooked will escape as the batter sits, they may be slightly denser than if they had been cooked immediately after the batter was mixed.

To use the batter, simply preheat the over as required for your recipe and then spoon the batter into muffin tins or cups and cook as usual. Do not stir the batter, as this will force out more of the carbon dioxide bubbles. If the batter has separated, gently fold the ingredients back together. The muffins may take a couple of minutes longer to cook, since the batter starts out colder.

You can also freeze muffin batter in paper muffin cups for later use. Fill the cups as you would normally, and then freeze them while still in the muffin pan to hold their shape, until solid. Transfer them to a resealable plastic bag and keep frozen until you are ready to use them. To use, preheat your oven, place as many muffins as you need into a muffin pan and cook. They will take about five minutes longer than if they were being made fresh."

I made these Cream Scones last week and they were just delicious. I did the Cherry Vanilla version (subbed dried cranberries for the cherries) and they lasted for days and still tasted fresh. Just an alternative.

Classic Cream Scones
by Regan Daley

These plump, moist scones are rich and subtly sweet.

Yields 8 large scones.

9 oz. (2 cups) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbs. baking powder
1/2 tsp. table salt
2-3/4 oz. (1/2 cup) dried currants (optional)
3 oz. (6 Tbs.) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
For finishing:
1 large egg lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon milk for glazing
1 to 1-1/2 tsp. granulated sugar

Position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F. Line a heavy baking sheet with parchment. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the currants, if using, tossing until evenly distributed and coated with flour. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two table knives until the largest pieces of butter are about the size of peas.

In a small bowl, stir the cream and egg yolks just to blend. Add this all at once to the flour mixture. Stir with a fork to begin combining the wet and dry ingredients and then use your hands to gently knead the mixture together until all the dry ingredients are absorbed into the dough and it can be gathered into a moist, shaggy ball. Don’t overknead: This dough is sticky but benefits from minimal handling. Set the rough ball in the center of the prepared baking sheet and pat it gently into a round about 1 inch thick and 7 inches in diameter. Don’t be tempted to make the round any flatter.

With a sharp knife or a pastry scraper, cut the round into eight wedges; separate the wedges. Brush the scones with the egg-milk glaze (you won’t need to use all of it) and sprinkle with the sugar. Bake until the scones are deep golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of a wedge comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Slide the parchment onto a rack and let the scones cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Cherry-Vanilla Scones: Replace the currants with 6 oz. (1 cup) dried cherries, coarsely chopped. Add the seeds scraped from one large vanilla bean (or add two tsp. pure vanilla extract) to the cream and egg yolks before combining with the dry ingredients.
photo: Scott Phillips
From Book;Fine Cooking 61, pp. 63
December 1, 2004
  Re: Re: muffin batter question by Dismc (I've often made them...)
thanks, Daphne and Shannon. I will have to save the scone recipe for another time as I do not have all the ingredients. Good to know about not remixing...that would have been my inclination.

Everything tastes better Alfresco!
  Re: Re: muffin batter question by chef_Tab (thanks, Daphne and S...)
good info!!
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Re: muffin batter question by chef_Tab (thanks, Daphne and S...)
Theresa, did you try making the muffins ahead? How did they turn out?
  Re: Re: muffin batter question by Dismc (Theresa, did you try...)
The freezing in the muffin paper, that's a great idea!!!!
Empress for Life
  Re: Re: muffin batter question by Dismc (Theresa, did you try...)
I chickened out. I was trying a new recipe as it was so I just got up even earlier and made them that morning. They are delicious so I will be keeping this recipe.

Everything tastes better Alfresco!

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