WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — When local farm-fresh strawberries hit the fruit stands, you can probably hear my squeals of joy across the country. I’m seriously crazy about North Carolina Strawberries and hit the pick-your-own farms at least once a week during the season.
It’s not as if I need another reason to eat my super-sized share of fresh strawberries, but I found one. Today’s muffins are wonderful unadorned, but adding the strawberry syrup, make them perfectly sublime. The subtleness of the nutmeg is enhanced and brightened by the sweet fresh berries and syrup. It’s one of those mysteries when the combination is far greater than the some of its parts.
The muffin texture is somewhere between pound cake dense and shortcake light. Sweetened just so with only a half-cup sugar, it is the perfect background to the sun-ripened strawberries we can enjoy this time of year. I hope you love them as much as I do.
Nutmeg Muffins with Fresh Strawberry Syrup
6 tablespoons butter
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 ¼ cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ cup 1 % or higher milk
2 cups sliced strawberries
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon water
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 6-cup, extra large non-stick (or 12-cup regular size) muffin tin and set aside.
2. Using a mixer, mix together butter and ½ cup sugar on medium high speed until creamy. Add egg and mix thoroughly, scraping down sides as necessary.
3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture with the butter mixture, alternating with the milk until all the dry ingredients and milk are added. Batter will be fluffy. Divide equally among the prepared muffin cups.
4. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until muffins are lightly brown at edges and bounce back when lightly touched on top. Serve with strawberry syrup, if desired.
Combine the strawberries, sugar and water in a small mixing bowl. Using a potato masher (or fork) mash the strawberries to create a rustic syrup. Let stand 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, before serving.
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