Sweet or Savory, or Both. Pumpkin & Cheese Makes a Good Muffin (Chiang Mai, Thailand)

pumpkin muffin4Free cheese week. No, I don’t stand on line for it, and it’s not really a common thing to get free cheese where I live. Cheese is pricy, well let me just add a disclaimer to that–cheese is pricy when you bring home a little over 1,000 USD a month. This is a pretty standard teaching salary in Thailand, though if I had a masters I’d get more, money that is, the cheese I would buy myself…

Lot’s of cheese, more cheese than the 170 grams that I got last month, which I guess is about 3.5 ounces (I stand corrected). Yes, cheese, now one would probably just eat the cheese as is, or buy some crackers to go along with it. Nope. It sits in my small fridge until I can think of something to do with it, alas, cheese on it’s own is boring, and such a unimportant amount, not worth the effort to eat on its own…

Then I saw something, and decided to give it a try, because we’re sick with pumpkins this month. I guess it’s pumpkin season… pumpkin muffin6Pumpkin and cheese…?

Well, on it’s own it doesn’t sound very good, right? No, maybe a slice of cheese in the middle of two pieces of pumpkin, a mini sandwich type thing. No. That sounds awful. Maybe a bread, yes I mad it, a Tangzhong, which my wife loves.

I was thinking quick bread. I was thinking savory! Yes, but this muffin has sugar, quite a bit of it, 1/2 cup of brown sugar. But it also has red pepper (the spicy kind) and black pepper as well, not so much, 1 teaspoon black and 1/4 red, but this does something to the flavor balance, and you really can taste the pepper–which puts it on the savory side. Who would have known. One cup of pureed pumpkin, like I said, seems to grow like weeds in these parts, which isn’t bad, and the price is right, less than a dollar for a half a pumpkin…which goes a long way.

pumpkin muffin3Back to the muffin. Sour cream, 3 tablespoons, 2 eggs, and a stick of butter–though I usually cook with coconut oil, something I buy in a bag, and very cheap in Thailand. The cheese, right, I almost forget. Such an unimportant amount, but when you’re making bread or muffins or something with cheese, then usually a cup and a half (a quarter in this case) is enough…

Taste great–can really taste the spice, and the pumpkin and cheese together is not at all disagreeable (I thought it would be). This is a nice tasty muffin, and if you’re a bit tired of the same old same old, like blueberry muffins, give these a try. There are several recipes out there on the net, and I’ll recommend this on…   thai-pumpkin

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