Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Salmonella vs. Raw Cookie Dough: My Own Personal Catch 22

I must admit, you folks have seriously upped your play with the zucchini suggestions. I’m super excited about some of these ideas, but I’ll maintain the suspense till Friday when I announce who dazzled me the most with their recipe. It’s certainly not too late to submit an idea if you didn’t get a chance to yesterday.

I don’t know about all of you out there but I love batter. I mean any batter: cookie, brownie, muffin, bread, cake, etc. If it’s sweet and raw, I want to eat it. I’ve been known to actually forgo eating for the entire day just so I can sit down and eat as much cookie dough as I please after the kids go to sleep (I mean I’ve got some scruples; I would never want my children to see my indulge in such wantonness).

I used to have a relatively clean conscience about this little indulgence until I took a Health and Food Safety Class from a matronly little English lady. At first glance, she seemed harmless with her floral blouse and timid demeanor. But I soon realized it was all a ruse. Before long, she disclosed that she trusted no hands but her own to prepare her food and she detested visiting her niece because she felt her niece’s handwashing practices were below par.

Then she told the story of a mother who, while baking a birthday cake for her son, carelessly tasted the batter, only to die days later from salmonella poisoning. That one floored me. First of all, I felt so guilty that I, who have consumed raw eggs by the hundreds in my years of batter addiction, was still alive and kicking. I felt I had dodged a serious bullet there. But then my mind began wondering whether it was time to hang up my spatula and stick to eating things that have been baked thoroughly. I’ll be honest, that story threw me off my game for a while.

Thankfully, that was 8 years ago and I’m happy to say I’m back to my old ways again, but it’s all far less innocent this time around; that story continues to linger in the back of my mind. But on a happier note, I’ve found a new batter that I’m thoroughly enjoying at the moment, and while that fact alone would never warrant a recipe making it to my blog, the fact that I curbed my eating of this batter because I wanted to save myself for the baked version instead, well, that’s saying something. And it’s a great way to use all those beautiful blueberries that are floating around the markets these days. Enjoy!

Blueberry-Coconut Muffins courtesy of Miss Paula Deen

½ c. butter, softened
¾ c. sugar
2 tsp. lemon zest
2 large eggs
5 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1 c. flour
½ c. sweetened flaked coconut
½ c. fresh blueberries

Heat your oven to 350 degrees and grease the insides of 6 jumbo muffin cups (I use jumbo here because I feel better about myself if I’ve only eaten one muffin instead of two or three; it’s just a mind game I play with myself so feel free to use 9 or 12 regular size muffin cups and shorten the cooking time).

In a medium bowl, beat butter and sugar till smooth. Add eggs one at a time. Add cream. Beat in flour just enough to combine everything. Then turn off the mixer, grab the spatula that you will be licking like a dog in about 10 minutes time, and stir in the coconut. Fold in the blueberries. Fill muffin cups, pop in the oven to bake for 20 minutes, and then stand over your sink scavenging for every last trace of batter out of the bowl. I have heard of people sticking their entire heads inside a mixing bowl and using their tongues to lick it clean, but I would never partake in or condone that sort of behavior. Never. I mean it.

Now perhaps you have glanced over this recipe a couple of times and noticed that there is no leavening agent listed in the ingredients. It is not a typo. I had the same thought the first time I made these. Have no fear, they will come out completely muffin-esque with the signature golden brown dome. I don’t know why, but I don’t need to when they taste this good.

1 comment:

  1. I felt I needed to let you know how scrumptious these muffins really taste! They have a pound cake density and would be a great breakfast muffin. Thanks for letting me try one...I'm eating my second right now!