This is a recipe from 2007. The photos are from 2007. I have since baked corn muffins using various modifications but I have always come back to the original recipe. Two things make it stand out. Yellow corn meal and fresh sweet corn.
Corn meal is not corn starch. Corn starch, called corn flour in some regions, cannot be substituted. But can white cornmeal be substituted for yellow cornmeal? I have tried substituting. I once baked a dozen corn muffins using white cornmeal. In terms of texture, there is not much difference. White cornmeal is made from white corn; yellow cornmeal is made from yellow corn. But in terms of color, the difference is marked.
In terms of nutrient, is there a difference? According to one site, the presence of beta carotene in yellow corn (that’s what makes it yellow) makes it more nutritious because the beta carotene is transformed into Vitamin A during digestion. But whether that nutritional edge is retained in cornmeal, my research yielded no definitive answer.
The sweet corn is fully cooked and cooled before the kernels are cut off the cob. How the corn is cooked will flavor the muffins differently. Grill the corn and your muffins will have a lovely smoky flavor. The kernels will be crunchier too. Boil it or steam it and the corn will give the muffins are softer and creamier mouth feel.
Can canned corn be substituted? Sweet corn kernels may be used BUT they will not give the same creaminess that fresh corn can. Cream-style corn is not a good idea because it makes the muffins dense.
Muffin is a quick bread; not a cake. You’re really not supposed to overmix muffin batter. Just stir until the mixture is homogenous. Don’t wait for it to be ultra smooth because there’s corn meal in it and the coarseness will always be visible. When the batter is done, gently fold in the corn until evenly distributed.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Line a 12-hole muffin pan with paper liners.
- Shred the corn using a sharp knife. Don’t cut too close to the cob. You can scrape off what you can’t cut.
- Place the softened butter, sugar, honey and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Beat with a wire whisk (you can use a hand mixer but it really isn’t necessary) until smooth.
- Add the flour, baking powder, salt and yellow cornmeal. Mix together, pouring in the milk as you do.
- When the batter appears homogenous (do not overmix), add the shredded corn and fold in.
- Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 25 minutes.
- They’re ready to eat as soon as they’re cool enough not to scorch your hands and tongue.