Foto: Mari & Annika
I fly quite a bit, and my airline of choice is SAS. Most of my trips are between Stavanger and Oslo, flying time about forty minutes. A normal return trip from Oslo is an end of the day or an evening affair. I have been grilling, working with new products or sitting in meetings for most of the day. It´s not unlikely that I have skipped lunch and am in need of food.
Airplane food has for most of us an awful reputation. Some airplane food is awful, but generally speaking it is a lot better now than it was ten (or twenty) years ago. SAS doesn´t offer meals on these short flights, rather an array of snacks to hold folks like me over until reaching my destination.
The savory choices on these trips come in the form of potato chips, nuts and crispbread with a cream cheese-like substance. As for sweets it´s pretty much chocolate and muffins one can choose between. I generally go the cashews-and-a-glass-of-water route, but I have sampled my way through most of what they have to offer – including the chocolate muffin. More on this is a bit.
A word about Norway: Norway is NOT a great muffin nation, or for that matter a cookie or brownie nation. There are lots of brownies and muffins around, most of them (on a scale of 1 – 10, where 10 is best) hovering between a 3 and a 4. Cookies fall another notch on the scale, but that´s a different story.
As far as muffins go the biggest problems are industrial baking and not-wonderful ingredients. The other thing that really irritates me with the Norwegian muffins is that they are often enormous, and an enormous industrial muffin is too much muffin. A really great muffin should be homemade, using great ingredients, and portion-wise just enough to satisfy. I should also add that many of the best muffins are best served warm, right out of the oven, and generously buttered. A newly-baked blueberry muffin with just-melted butter is an iconic dish.
There is another muffin I really love. It is made with apples and pecans, brown sugar and cinnamon. Eating one of these babies could easily make you forget you are sitting in the worst seat on the plane, if that is where you are sitting. The sweaty guy on your left and the lady on your right, the one who just can´t stop talking, will all of a sudden cease to exist. If you had the connections to get this baby warmed up and buttered, you could just close your eyes and enjoy the perks of sitting alone in Business Class.
Apple & Pecan Muffins
3 middels store epler, skrelte og skåret i små terninger
1 l hvetemel
8 ts bakepulver
1/2 ts salt
2 dl tettpakket brunt sukker
2 ts malt kanel
2 egg, romtemperert, pisket
5 dl melk
4 ss smeltet smør
1 dl hakkede pekannøter
Forvarm ovnen til 180° C
- Ha epleterningene i en bolle med vann og litt sitronsaft oppi (for å unngå at de blir brune).
- Bland sammen hvetemel, bakepulver, salt, brunt sukker og kanel i en stor bolle.
- Ha egg, melk og smeltet smør i melblandingen. Ikke rør.
- Sil av vannet fra epleterningene og ha dem, sammen med pekannøttene, opp i deigen.
- Rør blandingen forsiktig sammen, til melet er så vidt blandet inn. Må ikke røres for mye!
- Bruk en skje for å fylle deigen oppi en smurt muffins-form. Det blir nok deig til 12 store muffins.
- Stek dem i ovnen i 20–25 minutter til de er gyllenbrune.