After a week of frantically chasing GCSE coursework, marking A2 essays and finishing Year 8 reports, Sunday was to be My Official Day Off. A day to spend with friends, visit somewhere new and eat delicious food.
With a sunny day forecast, we packed a picnic of grapes, soft cheese, crusty bread, Co-op Salt and Vinegar crisps (trust me, they are amazing), Courgette, Sundried Tomato and Feta Muffins and home-made chocolate and hazlenut meringues.
We left Kent with the birds singing and the sun-shining. We passed Clacket Lane Sevices with the birds singing and the sun shining. We drove under landing aeroplanes at Heathrow with the birds singing and the sun shining. We arrived at Blenheim Palace , Oxfordshire, with no birds singing and the sun definitely not shining.
Undeterred, we walked around the beautiful grounds of Blenheim Palace; past the lakes and cascades, through the secret gardens and along the great lawns . And, when hunger struck, we shunned the Sunday Lunch in The Orangery, The Pleasure Gardens Deli and Water Terrace Champagne Bar, and, with the car doubling up as a windbreak, we laid out the picnic blanket, embraced the chilly spring afternoon and feasted on cheese, bread, crisps, savory muffins and chocolate and hazelnut meringues. A perfect Official Day Off.
Here is the recipe for the delicious Courgette, Sundried Tomato and Feta Cheese Muffins.
Happy Picnic-ing x
300g self-raising flour
50g melted butter
180 ml milk
1 courgette (zucchini)
100g sundried tomatoes, chopped
150g feta, roughly chopped, plus 50g for sprinkling
12 torn basil leaves
1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases.
2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, courgette, feta, sundried tomatoes and basil. Season to taste and make a well in the centre.
3. In a large jug, whisk eggs, melted butter and milk together. Pour into the flour mixture and fold gently until just combined.
4. Spoon mixture evenly into muffin cases. Sprinkle the remaining feta cheese on the top of each muffin.
5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until cooked. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to an iron rack to completely cool. Store in an airtight container.
Makes 12 good sized muffins.