Sunday, September 2, 2018

Tips for Making a Cute DIY Muffin Gift Basket and Strawberry Muffins

Stitching it Right is honored to partner with Village Bakery to bring you this post about how to make a yummy muffin gift basket.

When you're looking for a great, thoughtful gift, maybe a muffin gift basket would be a good choice. After all, muffins are tasty, baskets are pretty, and if you stitch up a little basket liner to put in the basket, it makes it look even cuter. It also gives the recipient a way to temporarily cover up the muffins when she or he isn’t eating them.

muffin gift basket
Muffin Gift Basket image courtesy of Pixabay

Prepare the Muffin Basket

Get started by choosing a basket the size you’re thinking of giving. Keep in mind that a really big basket, while it may look cool and exciting, can mean a LOT more time baking, plus, if the recipient doesn’t have a large family, the muffins may go stale before they get eaten. A basket that’s big enough to hold six to twelve muffins or twelve to twenty-four mini-muffins is usually ideal.

Make sure the basket is clean inside and out. Put a layer of plastic wrap, parchment paper, or waxed paper in the bottom to help keep food particles out of the basket’s weave.

Sew a Simple Basket Liner

Take a large bandanna or piece of fabric and lay it in the bottom of the basket. Press it down in, to line the entire bottom of the basket with the edges of the fabric hanging over. The excess fabric will fold over the muffins for a pretty cover.

Use a needle and thread to sew small pieces of ribbon onto the liner right where the handles of the basket are - this will let you tie the liner to the basket so it doesn't shift around after you put in the muffins.

My Favorite Strawberry Muffin Recipe

(You’ll have to let me know if you try these berry muffins and like them. I really love them, but I know everyone’s got their own preferences. I’ve also made them with blackberries, and those were tasty, too.)

Strawberry Muffin Ingredients:

  • 1/4-cup cooking oil
  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1/2-cup milk
  • 1-cup minced strawberries
  • (If using strawberry preserves, reduce this to 1/4-cup and puree the jam)
  • 1&3/4-cup flour
  • 1/2-teaspoon salt
  • 2-teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2-cup sugar
  • 1-teaspoon vanilla or almond extract (optional)

Steps to Make Strawberry Muffins:

  1. Gather your ingredients and your baking supplies, including mixing bowls, a mixing spoon, a hand mixer, muffin tins, and muffin papers.
  2. Combine the wet ingredients in one small mixing bowl and the dry ingredients in a larger mixing bowl.
  3. (The minced strawberries go in the dry ingredient bowl - who knows why - but it works!)
  4. Pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and stir just long enough that the dry ingredients are coated, but still lumpy.
  5. Fill the muffin tins
  6. (this makes about 8 large or 16 mini muffins)
  7. Bake in a 375-degree oven for about 20-25 minutes for full-size muffins or 15 to 20 for mini muffins. (When they turn golden brown, they're done.)
  8. Let the muffins cool before loading your gift basket and presenting your friend or loved one with your DIY muffin gift basket.
(If it's going to be a while before you see them, take advantage of a sealing food container or zipper bag to keep the muffins fresh in transport.)

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