One of my fondest memories of summers in America was going to camp, and while people railed and mocked camp food, I loved it! And nothing to me was more exciting than the mornings we had cornbread, I had experienced nothing like it in my home. The idea of someone baking for breakfast was beyond exciting and the fact that you could pour maple syrup all over something that was called bread – but in fact tasted like cake, was the best thing ever.

This recipe – based on Ina Garten’s, is one of the first I introduced to my British husband, but when I looked for the maple syrup to serve along with the muffins I was confronted with reality. 25 years ago maple syrup in the UK wasn’t just expensive but really hard to come by. My husband suggested that we replace the maple syrup with golden syrup and our British American partnership was off to a roaring start!

  • 190g (1 ½ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 100g (½ cup) granulated sugar
  • 60g (½ cup) cornmeal (fine polenta)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 175ml (¾ cup) milk
  • 115g (½ cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Butter, maple syrup, or golden syrup to serve
  1. Heat oven to 180℃ (350℉). Line a standard 12 hole cupcake tin with paper liners and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. In a measuring jug combine the milk, melted butter, and egg, and mix well. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture in the bowl and stir until just blended.
  3. Spoon batter into the prepared tin, to about ⅔ of the way full. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the tops are crisp and crackly on top and bounce back when lightly pressed on top.
  4. Muffins are amazing served warm topped with butter and either maple or golden syrup.