Bacon, Cheese & Onion Spelt Muffins – A delicious and easy to make recipe using spelt flour, which is an ancient grain. These are perfect for a weekday breakfast or weekend brunch. Using spelt flour adds a nutty flavour and light texture, as well as being lower in gluten than normal wheat flour.
Doves Farm Ancient Grains
I love baking, as regular readers of Lavender and Lovage will know; it was also the biggest section in my recently published book. From simple tray bakes, cakes and scones to sourdough bread, pies, tarts and muffins – I always look forward to relaxing in the kitchen on a baking day, plus you get to reap the delicious benefits too. Today’s recipe for Bacon, Cheese & Onion Spelt Muffins has become a firm family favourite already, with requests to make these savoury muffins (buns) being made regularly. Apart from the smoked bacon lardons, vintage Cheddar cheese and spring onions, what makes these muffins so special is the use of organic white spelt flour. As part of an exciting new recipe collaboration with Doves Farm, my recipe for Bacon, Cheese & Onion Spelt Muffins is the first in a series using a selection of their ancient grains, of which spelt is one.
There is something rather exciting about baking with ancient grains – firstly, it’s a direct link to our earliest ancestors and what they would have used thousands of years ago. Secondly, apart from the nostalgic link to bakers past, for me it’s all about the texture, taste and the lower gluten in ancient grains that makes baking with them so interesting. Take today’s recipe for these savoury spelt muffins, spelt flour was widely used by the Romans and is lower in gluten than most of today’s modern wheat varieties, which makes it easier to digest. This ancient grain is mentioned in the Old Testament book of Ezekiel, and, Hildegard of Bingen praised it in the 12th century for its healthy, nutritional benefits. As an avid baker, I love the lovely nutty, slightly sweet flavour as well as its light rise in cakes, scones and buns. It’s also a low GI grain with a high protein content.
As well as being wonderful when used in “quick breads” such as muffins and scones, it’s also fabulous when used in yeast raised and wild yeast breads such as sourdough. Plus along with the nutty flavour I mentioned above, it’s a flour that rises well, giving a light and fluffy rise and texture. I’ve used organic white spelt flour in today’s recipe for Bacon, Cheese & Onion Spelt Muffins, but, they would be equally as delicious if made with organic (and stone-ground) wholemeal spelt flour too, albeit slightly denser in texture. These breakfast muffins (or buns) are so easy to make and the recipe yields 12 large muffins, perfect for any midweek breakfast, or for a leisurely weekend brunch. They are also great when served with soup, stews and chilli, in the place of bread, and make a very delicious vehicle for sandwiches.
As well as spelt, I will also be creating more recipes with Doves Farm over the next few weeks using some of their other ancient grains, such as Rye, KAMUT® Khorasan, Emmer and Einkorn flours. Each one has a particular benefit when used in bread, cakes, pancakes and biscuits etc. And, each flour is packed with unique textures and flavours that makes them so exciting to use in the kitchen. The benefit of using ancient grains, apart from flavour, is the health benefits; they are naturally high in Omega-3, high in vitamin B, zinc and essential minerals such as selenium, which is particularly beneficial for healthy bones. I hope I have inspired you to try something new, (well old actually, as in ancient grains!) next time you bake, and in the meantime I’ll leave you with my recipe for Bacon, Cheese & Onion Spelt Muffins. See you soon with some new travel stories and recipes, have a wonderful weekend, Karen.
*Disclaimer: Paid collaborative post with Doves Farm. I have full control over all creative content*
Note for adapting this recipe for Vegetarians:
Omit the bacon and add some fried mushrooms or sun-dried tomatoes.