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Beetroot, Goats Cheese, Chocolate & Walnut Brunch Muffins

Lunch, Savoury Chocolate | 3rd October 2012 | By

 

That goat, otherwise known as Ethel, has filled my head with thoughts of goats cheese and chocolate and I can hardly think of cooking with anything else. The fig and goats cheese tarts still have my mouth watering at the thought of them. At the weekend, rather than making my normal loaf for my work sandwiches, I thought I’d try something a little different to take in for lunch. Some lightly vinegared baby beetroot was in the hamper I received for the #capricornchallenge.

Beetroot and chocolate in cake form has become something of a classic in recent years, but I wanted to try a savoury version.  I am a big fan of beetroot, CT less so. I figured that he might find beetroot more palatable contained in a savoury muffin with lots of goats cheese. And if he didn’t? I was very happy to eat them all by myself.

I was hoping the vinegar in the beetroot would combine with the yogurt and help the muffins to rise, but not make the muffins sour. I didn’t want the chocolate to dominate, but I did want it present – the proof of the pudding would literally be in the eating.

This is what I did:

  • Put 300g flour (100g wholemeal, 200g white) in a mixing bowl.
  • Added 2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp bicarb of soda and 1/4 tsp salt.
  • Added 2 tbsp cocoa powder & whisked together to ensure all was incorporated and there were no lumps.
  • Stir in 50g of chopped walnuts.
  • In a separate bowl, mashed 250g of cooked beetroot in vinegar with a potato masher.
  • In another bowl beat 2 medium eggs with 200ml yogurt.
  • Beat in 50ml of walnut infused oil and 50ml sunflower oil.
  • Beat in 100ml milk and a good good grinding of black pepper.
  • Beat in the beetroot.
  • Divided 100g Capricorn goats cheese into three.
  • Chopped two lots into pieces and stirred into the batter.
  • Chopped the third piece into twelve equal portions.
  • Made a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and added the batter.
  • Stirred as lightly as possible until everything was just incorporated.
  • Divided between 12 silicone muffin moulds.
  • Topped each with a piece of goats cheese.
  • Baked at 200C for 20 minutes
  • Left for a few minutes in their moulds, then turned out onto a wire rack to cool.

The shocking pink of the batter was beautiful before it went into the oven and I’m rather sorry I didn’t take a picture of it. It was brown by the time it came out, not in bad way, but not quite as impressive as I’d hoped.

 

We had some warm for breakfast on Sunday morning. Amazingly, CT thought they were good. He took some for his lunch that day and came back raving about them. I couldn’t quite believe it. I took some in for my lunch on Monday and I understood just what he meant. They were beyond delicious, bordering on addictive and a very satisfying meal in themselves. Goats cheese was the first thing to kick in, followed by the flavour of walnuts and then beetroot and not a sour note to be had. The cocoa did just as I hoped and gave a supporting role in bringing out the other flavours, rather than taking the lead. The only downside was these were not the normal one bowl wonder you expect from a muffin mix; I used three. Still, the washing up was worth it.

These are versatile, portable and would make a great picnic item as well as a good lunch, brunch or filling breakfast. Incredible as it may seem, they kept well too – CT was sworn to eschew any more so I could finish them off for my lunch today.

Thank you Ethel for inspiring me to come up with another fabulous chocolate and goats cheese recipe.

As beetroot are looking good and in season right now, I am submitting this to Ren’s monthly Simple & in Season. It is being hosted this month by Nazima over at her new blog Franglais Kitchen.

37 Comments

  1. Chele

    3rd October 2012 at 6:30 am

    I bet they pack a wallop of flavour. They look fantastic, and I love the idea of a muffin that crosses effortless from breakfast to lunch too.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      3rd October 2012 at 8:38 pm

      What I don’t understand Chele, is why I have never made anything like these before. They are far and away the best savoury muffins I’ve eaten and they keep really well too.

      Reply
  2. manu

    3rd October 2012 at 6:37 am

    Goat cheese is delicious!!! Never tested with beetroot…looks yummy!
    thanks for sharing!
    Have a nice day

    Reply
    • Choclette

      5th October 2012 at 1:39 pm

      Thanks Manu, goats cheese is delicious with beetroot.

      Reply
  3. Jacqueline

    3rd October 2012 at 10:49 am

    Well done for bring hubby over to the dark side, haha! They look amazing. What an inspired idea Choclette! I’m pinning them, so I don’t forget 🙂

    Reply
    • Choclette

      5th October 2012 at 1:40 pm

      Well it was a bit of a coup Jac 😉

      Reply
  4. mylittleitaliankitchen

    3rd October 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Gosh this is really inventive. You do create beautiful yummy things Choclette. That’s why you are a popular blogger. Well done to you! I want to try adding beetroot too.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      5th October 2012 at 1:44 pm

      Thank you Alida, you say such lovely things – much appreciated.

      Reply
  5. Johanna GGG

    3rd October 2012 at 1:38 pm

    they sounds aaaaammmmmaaaaaazing – truly inspirational! I can imagine the chocolate adds just that right bit of depth of flavour – just like soy sauce can do to chocolate in a sweet dish (yep I’ve done that). I actually have wanted to try some sweet chocolate goats cheese muffins for a while but never got around to it – I suspect I would prefer these – bookmarked!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      5th October 2012 at 1:42 pm

      You’ve hit the nail on the had there Johanna. I nearly described the chocolate as acting as an umami flavour. Sometimes savoury is best 😉

      Reply
  6. Katie

    3rd October 2012 at 6:46 pm

    OH wow, they sound amazing. Love the idea of savoury chcoolate and beetroot muffins. Both earthy flavours os I can see your thought process. You can still see the pink purple blush too. Beautiful. Would love to try one

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 2:51 pm

      Thanks Katie, I was surprised at just how good these were and shall be making them again.

      Reply
  7. laura@howtocookgoodfood

    3rd October 2012 at 6:55 pm

    I love these muffins. you are getting more & more creative, especially with the savoury elements of cooking. I know these would taste good and I like a muffin that doesn’t dry out after one day. So you may have invented something very special here, all with flavours I love too!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 2:52 pm

      Thanks Laura, these were still pretty good on day 5 which I was quite impressed by.

      Reply
  8. Miss C Flash

    3rd October 2012 at 7:33 pm

    What an intersting combination of ingredients, I wish I was as creative as you are. Your muffins look delicious and inviting.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 2:53 pm

      Thank you Miss C, that’s a very nice compliment 🙂

      Reply
  9. Janice

    3rd October 2012 at 8:17 pm

    What an interesting combination. Great use of the Capricorn Goats cheese.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 2:54 pm

      Thanks Janice – I have more up my sleeve yet 😉

      Reply
  10. celia

    3rd October 2012 at 10:17 pm

    What a wonderful combination of flavours! And they look absolutely fantastic too! We’re growing beetroot, but I’ve yet to use it in a cake..

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 3:04 pm

      Celia, you really must try beetroot and chocolate together in a cake, they make for a good combination.

      Reply
  11. belleau kitchen

    4th October 2012 at 7:50 am

    now as you know i’m on a massive beetroot fix this week… this look and sound incredible… what a genius idea and I think all the combos of ingredients are simply outstanding… you are very brave with your chocolate inclusion and I’d love to see more savoury recipes… did these boarder between the sweet and savoury or more sweet? Gorgeous!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 3:08 pm

      Thanks Dom, these were most definitely savoury with the only sweetness coming from the beetroot. I have more savoury yet to come …….

      Reply
  12. Caroline

    4th October 2012 at 5:57 pm

    Those flavours all sound as though they would go together wonderfully well – what delicious looking muffins!

    Reply
  13. The Squishy Monster

    5th October 2012 at 2:49 am

    I adore the unexpected creamy tang of goat cheese in this!—YUM!!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 3:13 pm

      Thanks, these muffins wouldn’t be half as good without the cheese.

      Reply
  14. Mich - Piece of Cake

    5th October 2012 at 7:11 am

    I am really fascinated by this combination of ingredients. I’ve always hesitated on baking with beet root but now I feel convinced by you. Those muffins look so delicious.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th October 2012 at 3:11 pm

      I’ve used beetroot in cakes a number of times now to great effect, but this was the first time I’d tried it in a savoury bake – do give it a go.

      Reply
  15. Gloria

    6th October 2012 at 1:11 am

    Look absolutely amazing and delicious!

    Reply
  16. Karen S Booth

    7th October 2012 at 5:10 pm

    A BRILLIANT entry and I adore savoury buns like these, as well as beetroot and goats cheese!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th October 2012 at 6:29 am

      Thanks Karen. Using beetroot in these was a revelation.

      Reply
  17. franglaiskitchen.com

    5th November 2012 at 9:09 pm

    What a wonderful idea. I like savoury muffins, perfect for lunchboxes. This looks gorgeous.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      11th November 2012 at 4:45 pm

      Thanks Nazima. These made a very welcome change to my normal sandwiches and were really quite delicious.

      Reply
  18. mummy24

    11th March 2013 at 8:19 am

    Interesting combination – would love to taste these!

    Reply
  19. Mimi

    25th May 2017 at 1:19 am

    Oh wow, these look wonderful, and not too sweet. I’m going to give them a try!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      25th May 2017 at 9:50 am

      Hi Mimi. These muffins are savoury rather than sweet. I have a whole bunch of savoury muffin recipes on here. I used to take them to work instead of sandwiches. In fact it’s about time I made some more!

      Reply

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