Cooking Through Ratio: Doughs and Batters – Quick Cakes – Quick Bread / Muffin

Last night I opened up a new chapter in Ratio on quick cakes. The chapter begins with quick breads and muffins which are essentially the same thing. The key difference is that muffins are cooked in cups.

Quick cakes are described as custards cooked at high heat with some flour thrown in for structure. They are all pretty much the same, differing in the ratio of the ingredients.

I am very confident with Alton Brown’s Old School Muffins and can practically make them with my eyes clothes. They have been thoroughly taste tested at work and with family and friends. I wondered how these muffins would compare.

The ratio is pretty straight forward, 2 parts flour, 2 parts liquid, 1 part egg, 1 part fat (butter). The basic muffin batter recipe also contained salt and baking powder. I added dried cherries to the batter for extra flavor and texture.

Interestingly enough, Ruhlman describes pancakes as thin muffins, which is clearly evident when looking at the batter. It had a lot more liquid and was a lot more pourable than Alton’s. It was clear that the end result was definitely going to be a lot more moist.

Cherry Muffin Batter
Cherry Muffin Batter

The muffin batter was baked in the oven pre-heated to 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes. That might have been too long. They were crisp and most, but considerably more browned than I expected. The cherries all sank to the bottom of each muffin which was not entirely unexpected given how loose it was. The end result was quite tasty indeed.

Cherry Muffins
Cherry Muffins

For me, these muffins would work best as an accompanying side to breakfast better than Alton’s, but don’t scream anytime snack choice. Another one down, many more to go.

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