Sausage and cheddar cheese muffins

Who would’ve thought my first post would be a savoury muffin? Bearing in mind that I have never made or eaten a savoury muffin in my life. Due to an issue with use-by dates on a pack of sausagemeat that I would detest to bin (mainly because it’s great quality meat from a butcher, but also because I paid good money for it and I would hate to see food go to waste), I had to find a way to use it up in a yummy, not-boring way.

So first post, first savoury muffin.

Sausage and cheddar cheese muffins
Sausage and cheddar cheese muffins

I actually think it is an interesting muffin, with the sausage taste coming through strongest on the initial bite, and then the cheese hits whilst you are chewing, and after the muffin is gone, you can feel the lingering heat of the cayenne.

Like a sausage roll, you can have it hot or cold (by that I mean room temperature – nothing meaty tastes that nice straight from the fridge). You can have it as a snack, as a packed lunch, as part of a dinner. Great savoury grab-and-go option if you don’t fancy all the sweet grab-and-go recipes available. I have to say – they taste pretty amazing the next day after reheating 30 seconds in the microwave.

Gooey cheesiness!
Gooey cheesiness!

If you’ve never had a savoury muffin before, this is going to taste weird initially, because when you see a muffin your mind automatically thinks it should taste sweet, and then when you bite into it, it’s a bit of a shock to the system. It is growing on me, though. I keep going back for more.

Sausage and Cheddar Cheese Muffins
Makes: 24 regular-sized muffins
Ingredients:
1 tablespoon sunflower oil (or groundnut or vegetable oil)
1 medium onion, chopped
450g good-quality sausagemeat* (or sausages, emptied of casing)
380g self-raising flour**
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cayenne powder
200g grated mature cheddar cheese
2 medium eggs, lightly beaten
480ml whole milk
4 tablespoons melted butter or oil
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees C. Grease or line 2×12 muffin tins.
  2. In a frying pan over a stove, heat oil on medium and fry chopped onion until translucent. Add sausagemeat and continue stirring to prevent burning and to break up the meat into little chunks the size of chocolate chips. When lightly browned, take off heat and put aside to cool.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together self-raising flour, sugar and cayenne. Mix in grated cheddar cheese. When sausage mix is cool, dump the whole lot into the same bowl.
  4. In another bowl, mix together eggs, milk and melted butter or oil. Pour into the first bowl and mix together, being careful not to overmix. The batter should be lumpy, but if too dry, add a splash of milk to loosen up.
  5. Divide batter 24 ways into prepared muffin tins. Bake for 25-30 minutes*** until baked through and lightly browned on top. Remove tins to cool for 10 minutes before turning muffins out onto cooling rack.
* To make this vegetarian-friendly, you can just omit the sausagemeat to make cheddar cheese muffins or replace with an equivalent vegetarian meat alternative. If doing the former, the volume of your batter will be less, so you will end up with less muffins, maybe 12-18.
** To make your own self-raising flour from plain flour (all-purpose flour), mix in 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda with 110g of plain flour. Sift together to mix.
*** The times given are for my beat-up, old, conventional oven. For fan ovens or ovens with better temperature control than mine, you may have to bake for 5 minutes less. Check for doneness with a toothpick, fork, or knife.

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