Beware, these are sort of time-consuming and many-dish-using. Despite this, they are worth it, I think.
Lemon-Poppy Seed Muffins
(from Williams-Sonoma Muffins cookbook)
1/2 cup butter, room temp
2/3 cup sugar
2 eggs, separated
1 1/3 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 Tbsp poppy seeds
Zest from 2 lemons
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350. Grease muffin tin.
In Bowl 1, use a hand mixer to cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, until well-mixed.
In Bowl 2, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, poppy seeds, lemon zest, and salt. Using the hand mixer on low, add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture in two increments, alternating with the buttermilk, then the lemon juice and vanilla. Beat just until smooth.
In Bowl 3, using a hand mixer with “spotlessly clean” beaters on high speed, beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks. With a rubber spatula, fold the egg whites into the batter until just blended.
Spoon into muffin cups (recipe says it makes 10 – it makes 12 for me) and then sprinkle with sugar.
Bake until golden brown and springy to the touch, 20-25 minutes. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes and then let them cool completely on a wire rack.
Serve with lemon curd, which you should make while the muffins cook and while you ignore the giant pile of dishes you’ve now dirtied.
Zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup lemon juice
3 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
6 Tbsp melted butter
Combine zest, juice, eggs, and sugar in a blender/food processor and blend for 20 seconds. With the machine running, drizzle in melted butter. Pour mixture into a small saucepan and bring to low boil over medium heat. Immediately reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick and coats the back of the spoon (about five minutes). Transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Stores, covered, in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Makes 1 1/3 cups.