Biscoff Spiced and Stuffed Muffins

What’s better than a wonderful Biscoff spiced muffin? Well obviously a Biscoff spiced AND stuffed muffin! ūüėč

This muffin recipe is a real winner, it lends itself to many flavours and produces the exact authentic muffin texture of bouncy sponge and an exterior that stands up to being packed in a lunch box and lasting til midday. As you might have noticed, I’m still on a packed lunch vibe, and these muffins will definitely feature in Little S’s lunch this week. (That is if they don’t all disappear before!)

Biscoff Spiced and Filled Muffins

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

makes 12

50g caster sugar

35g soft brown sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

250g plain flour

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp speculaas spice (or sub 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ginger and 1/4 tsp ground cloves)

115g dairy-free margarine, melted

150ml dairy-free milk

150ml dairy-free yogurt

75ml golden or maple syrup

6 tsp Lotus spread

  1. Heat the oven to 190 degrees Centigrade. Fill a muffin tray with liners.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together. Pour in the wet ingredients and combine. You want not clumps of raw flour but do not over-mix, lumpy is good.
  3. 1/4 fill the liners and then dollop 1/2 tsp of Lotus spread on top. Cover with the remaining muffin mix.
  4. I topped mine with some pearl sugar, but it’s not necessary
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, or until risen and golden and a knife comes out clean.
  6. Cool on a wire rack.
  7. Drizzle with water icing before serving if you like.

Homemade Speculaas Biscuits

I really love making biscuits, I think I like making them more than any other food. There’s something about it that I find relaxing and rewarding. Perhaps I should be listening to myself, maybe a cookie business is the way forward!

Anyway, I’m constantly on the look out for inspiration, be it in supermarkets, bakeries, magazines or online. Seeing something new to experiment with and recreate makes me happy, and happiness in certainly needed in the cold dark days of January. The inspiration for these speculaas biscuits comes from the gorgeous Ottolenghi cookbook ‘Sweet‘ which I got for my birthday. I’m a big fan of Yotam Ottolenghi and his food, and as you can imagine a recipe book of his sweet treats is right up my street. These homemade Lotus biscuits caught my eye straight away, and I have to say that with a few tweaks and experiments the resulting ‘friendly’ biscuits are spot on. The spice [and if you can get hold of genuine speculaas spice then all the better – The Speculaas Spice Company makes a really delicious spice blend or use this recipe to make your own] and crisp nature of the biscuits make them the ultimate accompaniment to a cup of tea or coffee.

You may ask why bother when Lotus biscuits are ubiquitous all over Europe? Well, they may be easily found, but in my opinion homemade is generally best and these biscuits would win hands down in any ‘cookie-off’.

Homemade Speculaas Biscuits

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

 

makes about 30

220g plain flour

1/2 tbsp baking powder

1&1/2 – 2 tsp speculaas spice mix

pinch of salt

125g dairy-free margarine

160g soft light brown sugar

20-30ml dairy-free milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 210 degrees C/190 degrees C fan/Gas Mark 6
  2. Cream together the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy, add 20ml dairy-free milk. The mix may split after this addition, if so add an handful of the flour.
  3. Sieve in the flour, spice, baking powder and salt and bring together to a firm dough. If it remains too crumbly add an extra splash of the milk.
  4. Roll out to the thickness of a pound coin and cut out shapes. Place slightly apart on lined baking sheets and bake for 12 minutes, turning the trays round half way through so they brown evenly. Cool on the trays before moving to a wire rack.
  5. These biscuits keep really well for about one week.

Speculaas spiced swirls

speculaas spiced buns

Other than brownies and cupcakes, cinnamon swirls are one of the most popular homemade treats that Little S takes into school on a Friday – not surprising really as a sweet spiced bun, prettily swirled and drizzled with icing is hard to resist! I really enjoy the whole process of making them of – I find there’s something magical about baking yeast risen pastries, the waiting and patience required seems to make the end result all the more special. Besides, you can get on with other things and then ‘ta da’ you’re on to¬†the next stage of the process.

speculaas swirl buns

So when I was lucky enough to be sent a sample of some speculate spice from VanDotsch (samples are surely one of the highlights of being a food blogger!) I immediately¬†thought of a speculaas spiced swirl bun. Speculaas is, after all a combination of cinnamon, cloves and other spices, surely a perfect spice combo for swirl buns. And my, are they good or what? They’re as warm and cosy as cinnamon buns but with an extra spice dimension which enhances the overall flavour. Mighty delicious, so much so they were hoovered up in seconds! I really would recommend investing in some speculaas spice for a little foray into Dutch spicing¬†and to add another layer to your usual spiced goodies.

speculaas spiced swirl buns, no egg, no dairy

 

 

Speculaas Spiced Swirl Buns

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

vegan spiced swirl buns

makes about 25

300ml dairy-free milk, I used Oatly

3 tbsp dairy-free margarine, such as Pure

450-500g plain flour

2 tsp dried yeast

50g or 1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp speculaas spice powder [optional]

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbsp cornflour

For the filling:

1/3 cup caster sugar

1 tbsp speculaas spice powder

3 tbsp dairy-free margarine

For the glaze:

2 tbsp soft brown sugar

2 tbsp water

2 tbsp pearl sugar/sugar crystals

And/or:

1/4 cup icing sugar

Water to make into a runny paste

  1. Melt the spread and milk together ‚Äď you want it to be warm and melted but not hot
  2. In a bowl mix together the flour, yeast, sugar, spice, cornflour and salt
  3. Make a well in the centre and pour in the warm milk mix
  4. Bring together to a soft dough and knead until it’s smooth and bounces back when prodded
  5. Cover and let double in size
  6. Mix together the spice and caster sugar. Set aside.
  7. Knock back the risen dough and roll out to a large rectangle
  8. Smear on the dairy-free margarine. Sprinkle over the sugar and spice mix, then roll up tightly into a long sausage
  9. Cut into even slices ‚Äď I managed to get 25 small slices from mine
  10. Place on lined baking sheets and cover. Leave to rise again for another half an hour
  11. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade/Gas Mark 4/375 degrees F
  12. Bake for 17-20 minutes until risen, golden and cooked through
  13. Melt the brown sugar with the water and brush over the top of the hot buns and sprinkle with the pearl sugar (if using)
  14. Remove from the pans and peel off the paper
  15. Drizzle with the water icing

dairy-free swirl buns