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  • Writer's pictureAmy Minichiello

Zucchini, ham & cheese Muffins

That first of week of school felt a little like being stuck in a fog. My bearings were all out of kilter. A new routine to adapt to and my eyes had to get used to the sight of seeing my little man in his navy and red school uniform.

A kiss, a hug, and another kiss, and then a wave from behind the glass window that now separates us from one another. His eyes glaze over with tears. Not the welling-type tears that fall over his cheeks, but the moistness that comes from being a little unsure about officially being a "schoolboy". I too was left in an emotional limbo of feeling nervous, happy, sad, and overwhelmed all at once. It's a big thing, this school thing. For the whole family. A chapter that we are only just beginning to feel our way into, and my goodness, it's exhausting, to say the least.

One thing that does come naturally, however, is packing his lunchbox. I love deciding what to nestle into each of the compartments in the quietness of the early mornings before little heads are peeled from their pillows. I like to place a few of his favourites amongst a couple of surprises. These zucchini, cheese and ham muffins were a surprise.

I cut one down the middle, spread a generous amount of softened butter on each side and wondered whether it would be was not. Hadn't even been touched. Instead, I ate it, while I stood at the kitchen sink contemplating what to cook for dinner. Is this a thing other "school mums" do? Eat the uneaten contents of their child's lunchbox? To a point, I must add. There are some things that come back (soggy biscuits, bread crusts) that are disposed of in the compost bin, but there was no way I was letting a perfectly good savoury muffin escape my enjoyment. Especially when it had been made with a @regenerating_farms zucchini from @barragunda.

And so another week begins. This time the savoury muffin has been replaced with an apple and cinnamon muffin. We'll see how that goes...

Update: The latter of the muffin varieties was devoured. But here is the recipe for the savoury variety, because I think they are delicious, and so does Vivvy.


Zucchini, ham and cheese muffins

makes 12

This recipe has been adapted from, Bluebell's Cakery - Sweet and savoury by Karla Goodwin

1 medium zucchini

4 slices of ham, I like to use Grandmother ham

250g plain flour, sifted

4 tsp baking powder

a good pinch of salt

1 cup grated tasty cheese

2 tbs melted butter

2 tbs olive oil

1 cup full cream milk

1/2 cup of greek yoghurt

2 eggs, at room temperature

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/2 cup grated tasty cheese, extra

Preheat your oven to 160c (fan-forced) and place paper cases into a 12-hole muffin tray. set this aside.

Grate the zucchini into a bowl and scatter over a touch of salt. Mix to combine and then set aside.

Slice the ham into thin strips and then place this into a large bowl along with the flour, baking powder, salt and cheese. Give this a mix with a wooden spoon until combined.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted butter, olive oil, milk, yoghurt, eggs and parsley until combined. Then pour into the dry ingredients, mixing once again until just combined.

Using your hands, squeeze as much of the excess water from the zucchini over the sink. You can also place the grated zucchini into a clean, dry teatowel and twist the ends to squeeze out the excess water if you find that easier. Place the zucchini into the batter and gently fold to combine.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared paper cases, evenly distributing between each. Scatter over the extra grated tasty cheese and pop into the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden. A skewer inserted into the middle should come out clean.

Cool in the tin for 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

I like to freeze these muffins so that I can pull out as many as I need each morning. They are quite delicious warmed (reheat in a 160c oven for 5-10 minutes) or even sliced in half and toasted under the grill or simply enjoyed at room temperature.


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