I met Susan at Food Bloggers Connect in September, and as I was planning our trip to Inverness, Susan blogs at ‘Mess in the Ness’ and she was a brilliant source of information and inspiration for day trips. We had a lovely night chatting and eating when we stayed at Eagle Brae.
Photo credit: Eagle Brae
Over to you, Susan!
Tell us about you.
Originally an Essex girl, I now live in Inverness (via London and Fife!). I’m a part-time administrator for the University of the Highlands and Islands, and a full time minister’s wife to Mr B. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, photography, baking and life in the Scottish Highlands.
Where do you find inspiration for your recipes?
Many places! Bloggers, recipe books, seasonal ingredients, and sometimes just my imagination for flavour combinations.
Is there anything you would not touch even if you were given £1,000 to eat it?
I admire people who forage, but I would not eat a foraged mushroom, just in case it was mistakenly identified as safe to eat!
What is your favourite way to share your recipes?
I like previewing my recipes via Instagram when they are fresh out of the oven, before posting them a few days later. I think my followers like to see ‘real-time’ instant blogging as it happens, and my love of photography works well with that.
What recipe did you choose to share today and why?
I’m sharing a muffin recipe that’s very flexible as the base ingredients can accommodate many different combinations of ingredients depending on the season or occasion. It’s also a recipe that is very quick and dairy free. The ingredients for the base of the muffins are ones that one of my dearest friends gave me as we were always baking together when we were housemates. Now that we’re both married and living at opposite ends of the country opportunities to bake together are few and far between!
Could you share a couple of tips that make your life easier in the kitchen?
Keep a permanent marker in the kitchen! I use it for labelling food bags, writing on appliance plugs (so it’s easy to identify which plug to plug into the wall), and for when I need to line tins with baking paper.
We have people round quite regularly for meals and meetings due to the nature of Mr B’s job, so I keep a notebook of dishes I make for our guests – it helps remind me of popular recipes we’ve tried!
1 thing no one should ever do in the kitchen:
Put ingredients into a cold pan – always heat the oil first!
Thank you so taking part in my little series, Susan. You made me smile about the foraged mushrooms. We always used to go to the woods and forage for mushrooms when I was little!
I also have my trusted Sharpie pen in the kitchen. I feel lost when it is not where it should! We made your muffins last weekend and my oldest two were fighting over the last one on Monday!
Here is Susan’s recipe:
Plum & Ginger Muffins
- 150 g caster sugar
- 150 g vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 150 g plain flour
- 1.5 tsp baking powder
- 250 g destoned and chopped ripe plums
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- Demerara sugar to sprinkle
Preheat the oven to 180°C fan.
Add 10 cupcake cases to a cupcake tray.
Beat your sugar, oil and eggs together until fully combined (1-2 minutes).
Stir in flour and baking powder ensuring that it is completely mixed in.
Add the plums and the grated ginger (or any fruit and complementing flavourings). This should loosen your mixture a little.
Spoon into the cupcake cases and sprinkle with demerara sugar.
Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
Leave to cool on a wire rack, and enjoy!
Tips: You can use lots of combinations of fruit and vegetable for this recipe – if using vegetables like carrot or courgette, or hard fruits like apples, it’s best to grate them. Flavourings like cinnamon and vanilla also work well to complement the fruit and veg!
Fancy seeing your recipe on Feature my Food Friday? Whether you are a keen baker, a blogger or a reader who would like to see their creation online, I would love to feature you! Just email me and I will send you more details.