Whew, the days leading up to Christmas have been quite hectic, but now it is over and a good time was had by all. This holiday season was particularly crazed, and I’m hoping to sit down and write more about it soon. I’ve learned some things in the process that I probably should share, but for now, let me share one of the recipes from my Christmas day family brunch buffet.
I typically host a Christmas brunch for my local family members which usually includes somewhere between 12 to 18 guests. Last year was the first in more than 20 years that I didn’t host brunch as I was in the hospital recovering from emergency brain surgery. Hosting my regular brunch this year was one of my goals while in rehab, and although everything didn’t go as planned, it went. I found it difficult to prepare the menu, the house, and all of the assorted details — and take photos for the blog on top of it all so forgive me for having a limited number of photos.
As I planned the menu, I decided upon two breads for our Christmas table. One was a typical yeast dinner roll from a recipe in the classic Fanny Farmer cookbook. My second was based on a recipe for a sweet potato cornbread loaf in an award-winning cookbook that I haven’t used enough titled In the Sweet Kitchen by Regan Daley. The sweet potatoes are a unique ingredient which provides additional texture and natural flavor. As a result, very little sugar is needed.
I modified the recipe to make muffins instead of a loaf. As shown here, you’ll end up with 12 to 14 muffins. Pre-heat the oven to 375º. The ingredients are as follows:
- 1 cup stone-ground yellow cornmeal (I used Bob’s Red Mill from my local Whole Foods)
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 3/4 cup full fat sour cream
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 cup cooked, mashed and peeled sweet potato. I cooked mine in the microwave on the potato setting and then let it sit for a while to cool which made it soft and spoonable. I cut the potato in half and scooped it out of the skin. I used about 3/4 of one large sweet potato.
- Line your muffin pan with paper muffin cups
- Combine the cornmeal and sugar in a large bowl, then sift in the remaining dry ingredients. Stir lightly to combine.
- In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs, then whisk in the sour cream, vanilla, and melted butter.
- Stir in the mashed sweet potato, then add the cornmeal mixture stirring just enough to moisten the dry ingredients.
- Fill the muffin cups, and put them in the oven to bake. Test with a toothpick after 15 minutes, but they should be done in 15-20 minutes.
You can serve these warm with plain or honey flavored butter. Enjoy!