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Saffron Bread Pudding Muffins

A makeover of the muffin. Delicious served with coffee or as a dessert.

1/8 teaspoon saffron threads
2 tablespoons hot water
10 slices toast-thickness white bread
1 cup each: cream, milk
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
75g butter, melted
1/3 cup standard flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch salt
finely grated rind 1 orange
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Lightly oil a 12-hole muffin pan or 12 silicone muffin cups.

Soak the saffron in the hot water until a good colour results.

Cut the crusts from the bread. Cut into 1cm cubes. There should be 7 cups of bread cubes. Place in a large bowl.

Combine the cream, milk, saffron and soaking water and pour over the bread cubes. Stand for 5 minutes.

Beat the eggs, sugar, vanilla and melted butter and stir into the bread mixture.

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt and stir into the bread mixture together with the orange rind and apple. Spoon into the muffin cups.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a fine skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes 12.