It has been hard to squeeze in baking Christmas cookies when I have this huge basket of Meyer lemons in my kitchen. I have frozen some of the lemons whole, to be used later for zesting and juicing, also some of the juice. I made Lemon Curd which I hope my neighbors are going to enjoy for their Christmas treat. (I have previously posted this recipe here.) I used leftover paper cupcake liners to dress up the lids.
My all-time favorite way of using these lemons has to be making muffins by this recipe, because they are so yummy, but also because it uses several whole lemons, not just zest or a few spoons of juice. Yes, you use the whole lemons, unpeeled! I first found this recipe in the Houston Chronicle years ago. I believe it was originally printed in the LA times. It makes two dozen regular sized muffins, a great accompaniment to a soup or salad meal, good for breakfast, and a very tempting snack. They are not too sweet, have only about 150 calories each, and pop with lemon flavor.
Meyer Lemon Muffins
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup sugar, and
- 2 tablespoons sugar (to mix with cinnamon)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 or 4 Meyer lemons, divided
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon Ceylon cinnamon ( regular cinnamon is fine) Ceylon cinnamon can be found at Penzey’s Spice stores.
- Heat the oven to 400°F Combine the flour, 1 cup sugar, the baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
- Cut two lemons into 1-inch pieces (include the thin peel, but not the white pith!). Put them in a blender and pulse until the lemon is finely chopped. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add the milk, butter and chopped lemon. Stir.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the lemon mixture. Stir just until all ingredients are moistened.
- Spoon the batter into well-buttered cups of muffin pans, filling each half full.
- Combine the remaining 2 T. sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle about 1/4 t. over each muffin. I like to keep a shaker jar of cinnamon sugar in my pantry. Cut the remaining lemons into paper-thin slices; cut each slice in half. Top each muffin with half a slice of lemon.
- Bake about 20 minutes, until golden brown. Run a small spatula or knife around each of the muffins to loosen, remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm. Makes 18 muffins.