Spring

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Having given up baking for Lent, I’m four weeks in and still have lots of recipes left to post.  (I wish I still had lots of baked goods left in my freezer.  Alas, they are long gone.)  The biggest question now is this: which of them will I post in the few weeks left before I’m baking again?

There was no question about which recipe I was posting today.  Spring has finally come to Toronto.  The kids on the street had an extended game of road hockey yesterday.  My oldest daughter went to the park to write, and my youngest went to the park to hang out with a friend.  (They would like me to tell you that they went to different parks.  I’m not sure why this is important, but apparently it is.)  As my neighbours and I start to venture out of our houses after a long winter, we see each other for more than that fleeting moment between house and car.  We can chat without the background sound of shovel on driveway.  And when we do chat, our words aren’t muffled by our scarves, nor are they muted by the hats over our ears.  The warm weather always brings a greater sense of community, and I love it.


I’ll happily eat lemon desserts any time of year, but they’re especially perfect in spring.  These lemon poppy seed muffins are easy to make and, although they’re delicious unadorned, the lemon icing really takes them up a notch.  And if you share them with your neighbours, they’ll definitely add to your sense of community, too. 

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
(from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours)


2/3 cup sugar
grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
¾ cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 stick (8 Tbsp) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 Tbsp poppy seeds

For the icing:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 – 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Line muffin pan with paper liners.  Place muffin pan on a baking sheet.

In a large bowl, rub the sugar and lemon zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and the fragrance of lemon strong.  Whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  In a large glass measuring cup or another bowl, whisk the sour cream, eggs, vanilla, lemon juice and melted butter together until well blended.  Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and gently but quickly stir to blend.  Do not overmix.  Stir in the poppy seeds.  Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a thin knife inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean.  Cool muffins for 5 minutes before removing from the tin.  Cool muffins completely before icing them.

To make the icing:

Put the confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl and add about 1 ½ Tbsp of lemon juice.  Stir to moisten, then add enough additional lemon juice to get an icing that is thin enough to drizzle from the tip of a spoon.

46 comments:

Katerina said...

Perfect for beakfast or afternoon sweet snack Beth!

Belinda said...

You seem to read my mind - lemon & poppyseed - one of best combos ever.

Barbara Kloss said...

These look and sound fabulous! LOVE your recipes...and am so glad you're still posting them regardless of your period of "no-baking" :)

Fresh Local and Best said...

You gave up baking for Lent? That's quite a sacrifice! Lent will be over soon enough, and this is a great time to build a wish list of good baked goods recipes!

I adore lemon baked goods. Lemon bars are my favorite, and Spring is the best season to enjoy them! These lemon poppy seed muffins look terrific!

Ruth said...

Mmmm these sound delicious! I completely agree about the sense of community! In the Beach it's like everyone explodes into their front yard as they rake and prune and stuff the big brown bags with yard waste. I love it too.

Ann said...

Oooh, another Dorie recipe. This one looks great too. I now want to get that book! I think these muffins look wonderful!

Barbara said...

No baking for Lent? Good for you, Beth! (I went on a diet and nearly all my posts were done before I started it! So I know what you are going through. Difficult to have a food blog without cooking.)
Lemon anything is a winner at my house...will copy this recipe and make it soon, I promise!

Jess said...

I'll definitely try these once Spring arrives for certain here (last year we got snow in May). Lemon poppy seed muffins are among my favorites! By the way, too funny about your kids' clarification about the parks :)

Carol said...

Definitely could have lemon any time of the year, brings sunshine to the winter months, but the thought of fresh lemonade and summer makes me smile! Those muffins look amazing, wish I had one right now! LOL @ your girls with the park :)

Manzanita said...

A lemony flavor puts a zing in your muffins. We still have snow on the ground but I think I'll try them anyway. Can't wait for spring. Look scrump dilly ocious. (don't know how to spell that)
Love from Manzanita

jillbert said...

I skipped these when the group made them, but they do sound tempting with the warm weather. I'm wearing shorts today - that won't last, but I'll take it for a day!

Julie Musil said...

I ate before reading this and STILL, I'm hungry! Your recipes make my mouth water. I'm so glad spring has sprung in your neck of the woods. Enjoy!

Joanne said...

Hm, I think you should find a way to share these delicious lemon muffins with your "blog" neighbors too :)

comfortablydomestic.com said...

Lemon Poppyseed are my all-time favorite muffin. I will definitely be making these this week! With all of the Dorie Greenspan recipes that you post, and I end up baking, I am thinking that I need to pick up that book.

Reeni said...

I love a lemon poppyseed muffin! One of my favorites and perfect for bringing some sunshine into our lives!

tenaciouslyyours.com said...

Lemons absolutely do wonders in the spring - adding a little bit of frosting to a muffin like this goes a long way!

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

You know I've heard that warmer weather does make people happier and chattier? These little cupcakes are very bright and no doubt could bring your neighbours and friends together with ease.

Heather said...

Lemon just says "spring" to me! These look delicious...what a lovely treat to share with others!

Valerie said...

Happiness = warm weather, Spring, and anything made with lemons or limes.

Your muffins look perfect! This was one of my favourite recipes from Dorie's book. :)

Angie's Recipes said...

Lemon and poppy seeds are always great in baked goods. I love those muffins.

allieksmith said...

I literally JUST ate a lemon poppy seed muffin! Too weird! They are perfect for spring and I like your recipe even better!! Idk if I could give up baking, that is a good idea for Lent :)

laxsupermom said...

Yum! They look perfect for an Easter brunch. Thanks for sharing.

Angela Felsted said...

Mmmm, lemons. For some reason I associate lemons with summertime. Probably because of refreshing cold lemonade. This makes my mouth water, as usual.

Lydia K said...

I'm at a tea house and I'm going to buy a muffin right now because your post made my stomach rumble.

Comfy Cook said...

Smart lady. You made Dorie's recipe. We loved it when I made it. Yours are really pretty too.

Rita said...

Like you I do love lemony dessert and with poppy it makes it even better. Yours looks so dainty and light; I have been eyeing Dorie's muffins.
Rita

michelangelo in the kitchen said...

Thank you Beth for sharing this delicious muffin recipe to me your neighbor! I love poppy seeds in cakes a lot. This is indeed a welcome treat worthy to share to my neighbors here too. What a way to enjoy Spring with such delight! Cheers!!!

girlichef said...

mmmm, lemon and poppyseed are such a classic combination...and it's been far too long since I've had it. These look delicious!

5 Star Foodie said...

Wonderfully delicious muffins, just perfect with lemon flavor and poppy seeds!

Medeia Sharif said...

My mouth is watering. I don't eat lemon desserts often, but I like the look of this.

Victoria said...

I bet when Lent is over you will be baking up a storm! These muffins look great. What's the first thing you plan to bake when Lent is over?

Sue said...

Lemon definitely conjures up spring, and summer too:) The comment from your daughters (about noting that they went to different parks) cracked me up! Kids are so funny:)

Julie said...

Lemon desserts are my favorite, right after chocolate :)

Joanne said...

warm weather definitely does breed a sense of community! I remember when I lived in Boston that on the first warm day of spring, everyone would be out walking around, smiling and laughing and just enjoying the day. It was lovely! I'm pretty sure these muffins are a representation of that. Bright flavored and delicious.

Emma said...

One of my favourite muffin flavours Beth! Pretty photos too.

Grapefruit said...

You've just reminded me of how much I loved these muffins & how badly they need to be made again . . soon!

Xinmei @ Pudding Pie Lane said...

Wow, I didn't know you gave up baking for lent!! That's some serious commitment :P

But well done for sticking to it, and good for stocking up on posts beforehand :) These lemon muffins look really yummy, especially with the poppy seed. The use of lemon always makes me feel like summer is coming :)

Hester said...

I'm a big fan of lemony desserts too. Really gorgeous muffins. Spring has sprung!

Mimi said...

One of our favorite muffins from Dorie.
Mimi

justine said...

these are lovely! like a breath of fresh air. :)

Amie Kaufman said...

Oh, they look delicious! I'm so, SO close to being able to use my new oven. It was connected yesterday, so now I'm only waiting until Lent ends before it's cakes and cookies galore!

It's nice to think that as the cold weather sets in here for Autumn, Spring's really coming to life where you are.

Beth said...

Amie, I'm so glad your oven is almost done. Hang in there -- the wait will be worth it!

And that's a good question, Victoria. It will have to be something really amazingQ

Sweet And Crumby said...

Oh how heavenly these look. I am also glad spring is here in full splendor. Although, I'm from So. Cal. so I don't think I have too much to complain about even if it has been our wetset year in decades. By the way, I have two teenagers (16 and 13) and I totally get why you needed to mention they were at different parks. They would't want anyone to actually think they LIKED hanging out together even if they really do. That's my gist on it.

Miss Good on Paper said...

These look so good! I love lemon zest in just about anything, though. =) One of my favorites is lemon scones, but I'd like to try this recipe, too. Thanks for sharing!

Miss GOP
http://missgoodonpaper.blogspot.com/

Kristen said...

Lemon is such a sunny flavor. Those muffins would brighten any day.

NO REASON NEEDED said...

Hello from a fellow Canadian neighbour...near London. I love your blog and your pictures are devine. I have to try these muffins. Lemon is my favorite.

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