Camp Cooking VIV MOON
CURE THE SWEET-TOOTH CRAVING WITH CAMP OVEN MUFFINS.
INGREDIENTS Serves 8
4 tbsp butter, melted 1 cup caster sugar 1 egg, beaten 1 cup milk 1 cup fresh blueberries (frozen work well, too) 2 cups plain flour 2 tsp baking powder Pinch of salt Fresh cream, to serve
DIRECTIONS Preparation time: 15mins Cooking time: 25-45 mins, depending on heat of coals
• Start a fire and have some coals ready. • Reheat camp oven so it’s hot when you add the muffin mix. • You need a small camp oven (or use a cake pan, ovenproof dish or highsided enamel dish that fits inside your camp oven). If you use a large camp oven or baking dish you’ll have a pancake, not a muffin. • Line your camp oven (or baking dish) with baking paper all the way up the sides of the oven, to prevent the sides from burning. • Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and set aside. • In a separate bowl, sprinkle the blueberries with about 1tbsp of plain flour and mix gently to coat and set aside. This will stop the berries sinking to the bottom of the batter. • In another large basin, mix the butter and sugar together until it has turned slightly creamy. • Add the egg and milk then stir until everything is well combined. • Add the sifted flour, baking powder and salt to the wet ingredient mix. Gently fold and mix until it all comes together. Don’t over-mix or you’ll have a heavy muffin. Treat it like scone dough. • Add the floured berries and fold them through gently so they are evenly spread throughout the batter. • Spoon this batter into your prepared camp oven or baking dish. • If using a baking dish, place it on a trivet inside the camp oven. • Put the lid on the camp oven and then place the oven on a bed of coals over a medium heat for about 25-30 minutes. Add some coals on the lid.
COOKING time will depend on the heat generated from the coals. When baking this muffin I had to replace the coals three times before the muffin was properly cooked.
The muffin turned out great; in fact, I’d say the slower cooking worked well. And while the sides of the camp oven looked burnt, the muffin, while well-browned on the outside, wasn’t burnt.
If you cook it too fast, all you’ll get is a burnt muffin on the outside and uncooked batter on the inside. Interestingly, taking the lid off a few times to check didn’t seem to affect how the muffin cooked – it still rose nicely, with a good texture.
The muffin is ready when the top is firm to touch and it’s cooked through – find out by inserting a skewer or knife in the middle – if it comes out clean, it’s cooked.
When cooked, remove from the camp oven (or baking dish) and let the muffin cool a little before serving with a dollop of cream. It was still good the next day for morning tea.
Don’t use canned blueberries, as they are way too moist. The original recipe – which I came across while in South Africa – said to mix the muffin in a potjie (camp oven). But having baked it, I think it would be much better to make as I have here.
WEBSITE OF THE MONTH
GOING with the South African theme, you’ll find loads of potjie recipes here: www.potjiekosworld.com
For more great recipes: Check out Ron & Viv Moon’s website at www.guidebooks.com.au Follow their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/moonadvpub