Magical Kiwi-Lime Marmalade filled Muffins (wheat free, gluten free, without xanthan or guar gum)

freely adapted from U.S.A. Cookbook by Sheila Lukins

1 cup white rice flour

3/4 cup gluten free oat flour (see note)

1/2 cup sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

1 cup full fat plain yogurt

1 stick unsalted butter (melted and cooled to room temperature)

1 tsp vanilla extract

zest of 1 lemon or lime

12 tsp of kiwi-lime marmalade (or jam/preserve/marmalade of your choice) - recipe follows

vanilla sugar (optional) 

4 tsp lime juice

2/3 cup sifted powdered sugar

1. Make the kiwi-lime marmalade (if using) and stick it in the fridge after it's cooled to room temperature for at least an hour before making these muffins.

2. Line a standard muffin tin with 12 paper muffin liners. Preheat oven to 400˚ F.

3. Take a whisk and combine the white rice flour, oat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.

4. In another bowl lightly beat the egg and egg yolk. Add the plain yoghurt, vanilla, melted butter and citrus zest and stir well.

5. Add the the egg/yogurt mixture to the dry ingredients and stir with a large spatula until combined and there are no dry powder pockets.

6. Put a tablespoon or so of batter in each muffin cup (just enough to fill the bottom of the cup). Taking a small spoon, place a generous teaspoon of kiwi-lime marmalade (or whatever jam you are using) in the center of each muffin cup on top of the batter. Try to keep the marmalade in the center, and not touching any of the sides of the cup.

7. Put another tablespoon or so of the batter on top of the muffin cups, covering the marmalade. Make sure to cover the marmalade entirely.

8. Sprinkle the top with vanilla sugar (if using), sparkling sugar, or leave plain if you don't like your muffins that sweet.

9. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center muffin clean with a few crumbs adhering. Don't overbake.

10. Cool the muffins in the pan for at least 15 minutes before removing from pan. When cool mix the lime juice with the powdered sugar and drizzle on top in a zig zag pattern to glaze the muffins.

Note 1. Oat flour is "controversial" in the gluten-free community as it sometimes can't be tolerated by those who are super sensitive to gluten. It used to be that you couldn't get oat flour or rolled oats truly gluten-free because there was cross contamination with wheat (they were grown next to each other, and the processing plant often times processed both wheat AND oats, so there was always some cross contamination). However pure oats are actually gluten free, and nowadays it's much easier to get gluten free oats and gluten-free oat flour, free of contaminations (Bob's Red Mill just started to produce them, and they have national distribution). If you have any doubts about whether you are sensitive to oats, check with your doctor.

I actually didn't have any gluten free oat flour around, but I did have gluten free rolled oats and oat flour is just rolled oats ground to a powder. You can make your own oat flour by grinding the rolled oats in a food process, a blender or a clean coffee/spice grinder. I find the coffee grinder works best as I can turn it upside down and shake it around to make sure all the bits are ground as fine as possible. I process the rolled oats 1/4 cup at at time with the coffee/spice grinder. 

Note 2. I used white rice flour and don't recommend you use brown rice flour for this recipe. Whenever I used the brown rice flour it tends to get much more crumbly and more gritty. 

Kiwi-Lime Marmalade

adapted from The New Basics Cookbook by Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins

This recipe is awesome and SUPER easy. If you don't like kiwis (who doesn't like kiwis? Maybe those people who are allergic, those whom I will totally excuse you, otherwise I will label you a freak for not liking kiwis) then skip it and use a different jam, preserve or marmalade. Make sure it's a relatively firm one, and nothing too loose (I don't recommend jelly as they tend to melt too much when baked in a muffin).

The best thing about this recipe is not just that it's crazy easy but also super impressive (homemade marmalade!) and all your friends will love you for it. The recipe makes twice as much as you need for the muffins, so use the rest on toast or english muffins. The original author recommend it on fresh cornbread and I have to agree with that recommendation!

4 medium or 5 small kiwis

1 large or 2 medium/small limes

3/4 cup granulated white sugar

2 Tbls fresh squeezed lime juice

1. Cut the kiwis in half and scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Dice the kiwis into 1/4" cubes. Put them in a large glass bowl that will fit in the microwave.

2. Zest the limes with a microplane grater into the bowl. If you don't have one, then use a peeler and carefully peel just the zest (the colored part of the lime rind) and not the pith (the white part of the lime rind) off. Then sliver the zest with a knife and add it to the bowl. Then put on your "to buy list" a microplane grater as peeling and slivering is a pain in the butt as you just found out.

3. Add the sugar and the lime juice to the bowl and mix with a spatula until combined.

4. Microwave the bowl for 5 minutes at full power and then mix the content. Put the bowl back into the microwave for 6 more minutes at full power.

5. Stir again and let the marmalade cool to room temperature. It will jell as it gets cooler. Store in the fridge for two weeks in a covered container.

Note 1. You can probably jar and preserve this, but I've never bothered because I'm too lazy to sterilize the jars. It's so easy to make, that I just make it, use it up and then make some more when I need to. 

Note 2. Try not to use overripe kiwis. The kiwis should be ripe or slightly underripe (but not hard). Kiwis are actually high in pectin and that's why the marmalade is so easy to make. It jells on it's own. If you use overripe kiwis, your marmalade will be a little looser, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It just tends to melt a little more when you bake them in the muffins.

Note 3. Make sure to use a large bowl for this. It's deceptive, because the mixture looks small but it will boil up. Don't cover it though! It'll make a HUGE mess.