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Willa Jean's lemon cornmeal muffins

Time 1 hour
Yields Makes 1 ½ dozen muffins.
Willa Jean’s lemon cornmeal muffins
(Glenn Koenig/ Los Angeles Times)

Cornmeal muffins

1

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin tins with spray oil.

2

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

3

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using an electric mixer, cream together the butter, sugar and zest until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Slowly beat in the lemon juice, oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract until fully combined.

4

In a separate bowl, whisk together the ricotta and mascarpone cheeses.

5

Slowly beat in one-third of the flour mixture into the muffin batter, then beat in one-half of the cheese mixture. Beat in half of the remaining flour mixture, then the rest of the cheese. Finally, beat in the last of the flour just until incorporated.

6

Portion the batter into the prepared muffin tins and bake until the muffins are puffed and golden, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove and cool the muffins in the tins on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes before removing. Cool completely before glazing.

Glaze and assembly

1

Whisk together the powdered sugar, lemon juice and cream to form a glaze. Drizzle a generous tablespoon over each of the muffins and serve immediately, or set aside to allow the glaze to set up before serving.

Adapted from a recipe by Kelly Field, chef and partner at Willa Jean Restaurant in New Orleans.

Noelle Carter is the former Los Angeles Times Test Kitchen director. She left in January 2019.
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