Thursday, December 1, 2011

Kabocheese mini muffins

I know Halloween is way over and fall is even ending, but I have been planning (and delaying) to make at least one recipe using kabocha or Japanese squash/pumpkin this year. So, I finally made one today, with another weird name. I have prepared a bag of mashed kabocha in my freezer since last month, so it was real quick to whip these muffins up. One thing from this post that amazed me is how quick the whole process went in one day. I planned the recipe only a couple hours ago and now I`m writing a post on it. Even my muffin tin was just delivered today! Maybe this is my productive day. Or muffin day.

Alright, so here`s how I cook and store the kabocha: Steam the kabocha for like 20 mins in a steamer until the flesh and the skin has softened. Microwave works very well too for cooking kabocha. Remove the skin, but don`t throw away because it`s perfectly edible. Mash the kabocha flesh, wrap in a storage bag, and keep in freezer until you use  it.

Now, let`s pretend that you have cooked kabocha in your mixing bowl.

Mash the kabocha in a mixing bowl. 

Whisk in olive oil...

...whole eggs and...

I used light brown sugar for this recipe and with the amount of sugar I used here the muffins were not too sweet. If you prefer sweeter version, try adding more sugar.
 I wanted something to give balance to the kabocha sweetness, so I added cubed cheese...
...and parmesan cheese. Sweet and salty are made in heaven.

Fold in sifted flour and baking powder.
Try not to overmix the batter to give some fluffiness to the muffin later. Give only a few stirs and just when the flour are invisible, you`re good.

Spoon the batter into muffin cups or tin and bake them in preheated oven at 200 C for 15 mins or until the top has turned firmed and inserted skewer comes out clean. 
I didn`t use muffin cups because: 1, All my muffin cups are too big for this tin, and 2, I needed to test my new non-stick muffin tin (which was delivered today!). I was so nervous thinking about any possible disasters if it didn`t work out!

But watching them puffing up cozily in my oven really made me feel relieved. And hhhhungrrrrry.

The first word came to my mind when I saw these cuties: BELLS. I don`t know why, but their shapes definitely ring bells in my head.
They might seem dense in texture, but don`t judge muffins from their looks.

Because, these pumpkiny muffins are fluffy and moist and...look at those ooey gooey cheesy bits inside. I was so happy with how they turned out I thought now is Friday night!
Makes about 24 mini muffins or 12 regular-sized muffins

200 g steamed kabocha (remove the skin)
150 ml olive oil
3 whole eggs
120 g brown sugar (this gives a mild sweetness)
100 g cheese (cubed into small chunks)
1 tbs powdered parmesan cheese
1 tsp baking powder
200 g flour

1. Combine mashed kabocha and olive oil in a mixing bowl.
2. Whisk in eggs, sugar, cubed cheese, and parmesan cheese.
3. Fold in sifted flour and baking powder.
4. Spoon the batter into muffin cups or tins.
5. Bake at 200 C for 15 mins or until the top has turned firm and golden brown and inserted skewer comes out clean


  1. Ahhh....I want...!! Love the colour of the muffins and the oozing cheese filling, looks so good Arudhi :)!!

  2. What a delicious idea :) Ive just bookmarked to try out tomorrow. Thanks! Belle

  3. They look delicious and very fluffy! I am curious, is there a difference between Japanese squash and the usual yellow squash we use?

  4. I cannot believe I have almost missed these beauties! Even though I'm not a big fan of pumpkins and similar squashes, your muffins are so beautiful, they could maybe change my opinion about the pumpkin family ;-)

  5. CG: Thanks, CG! The cheese did give a wonderful touch there!

    Belle: Thanks! Hope you like the result!

    Raquel: Thanks for visiting!

    Katerina: Hi, Katerina! I wish I took the whole kabocha picture because according to what I`ve read, kabocha and yellow squash are different. Cooked kabocha is very moist with strong sweetness and orangeness. I`ve never used the yellow squash, but it seems to be less sweet than kabocha. There are two scientific names for kabocha: Cucurbita maxima and Cucurbita moschata, while the name for yellow squash is Cucurbita pepo. Another difference would the harvesting time. Kabocha is harvested in late fall, while yellow squash is in summer.

    Sissi: To be honest, I too am not big on pumpkins, but as you know, they`re very nutritious and that`s why I tried using the kabocha for the muffins. It totally worked for me! :D The color is a big plus too!