Chorizo, Corn, Jalapeno, and Mozzarella Muffins

Weekend baking gives me an easily accomplishable goal that sets me free to be maximally lazy for the rest of the day.  Spend an hour puttering around the kitchen, and BAM – people are super impressed that you’ve created something tangible.  Say hello to the sweet, sweet rest of the day lounging around in your underwear watching Netflix.  Great Saturday success!

These muffins are cheesy, savory but slightly sweet, moist, and satisfying marriages of chorizo, corn, jalapeno, and mozzarella.  The polenta mixed in with the flour gives it a different texture than your average muffin – closer to cornbread.  I’m a big fan of these – just the right level of salty to sweet, and they’re pretty to boot with the contrasting green.  More power to the Ozzies at taste.com.au for another good recipe!

Like me, you may not have self-rising flour or buttermilk available.  Never fear, there are substitutions for these things!  Self-rising flour is a combination of all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt.  Chances are high that you already have all three in your pantry.  Mix 1 cup of all-purpose flour with 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon fine salt, and voila, self-rising flour.  As for the buttermilk, for this recipe I used 1 tablespoon of lemon juice plus enough milk to measure 3/4 cup, stirred, and let it stand for 5 minutes before adding to the dough.  Alternatively, you can use white vinegar instead of lemon juice, 1 cup of plain yogurt in the place of buttermilk, or 1-3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar plus 1 cup milk.

Polenta 4

Ingredients

  •  225g (1 1/2 cups) self-raising flour
  •  50g (1/4 cup) polenta
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  •  65g butter, chilled, chopped
  •  2 eggs
  •  185ml (3/4 cup) buttermilk
  •  100g mozzarella, cut into 1cm pieces
  •  1/2 cup sweet corn, frozen
  •  1 large (or 3 small) green onions, finely chopped
  •  125g chorizo, finely chopped
  •  1 jalapeno, seeds discarded, finely chopped
  •  2 tablespoons chopped fresh curly parsley
  •  2 teaspoons raw sugar
  •  50g mozzarella, extra, coarsely grated

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400F/180C.  Butter or spray a muffin tin with oil.
  • Combine the flour and polenta in a bowl.  Use your fingers to rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.  Reserve 1/4 cup of mixture.  Make a well in remaining mixture.  Add the eggs and buttermilk.  Stir until just combined.

Polenta 1

  • Stir in mozzarella pieces, chorizo, and green onion.  Spoon into the muffin tin, then sprinkle the sweet corn kernels over each muffin.

Polenta 2

  • Combine the reserved flour mixture, chorizo, jalapeno, parsley, sugar, and extra mozzarella in a bowl.  Sprinkle over the muffins.  Bake for 25-30 minutes or until light golden and cooked through.  Let cool for 15 minutes before removing from the muffin tin, then serve warm.

Polenta 5

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