When it comes to a cooking style that's a little out of the ordinary it's best left to experts like Ragamuffin in Leichhardt, a muffin bakery that opened on Norton Street three months ago. It's doing a roaring trade on Good Friday when we visit, carving a blazing trail through these cupcake centric times.
The crew at Ragamuffin first steam their muffins in individual muffin cases and finish them off by giving them a quick turn in the oven. It will be six minutes from the moment you order to the moment your hot little muffin lands in your hot little hands. Six minutes to heaven really.
The Boy and I leave the ordering in the capable hands of muffin aficionado Karen, who returns to the table bearing what resembles a muffin degustation ($3 each or $12 for six). We momentarily ooh and aah over the delectable looking treats in front of us, but it's not long before we demolish the lot.
|Strawberry Milkshake Muffin and Mixed Berry Muffin|
The muffins are still warm and all of them contain a gooey center. The Strawberry Milkshake has a subtle taste resembling its namesake and hides a warm, gooey middle of stewed berries. The Mixed Berry is a classic but I think the steaming process keeps the muffin much more moist than your conventional muffin. The Raspberry Jam Doughnut Muffin is a HUGE hit with The Boy who channels his inner Homer Simpson with every bite - it tastes EXACTLY like a jam doughnut and if you were given this blind folded you'd be forgiven for not realising you were eating a muffin. And the best for last - Lemon Gelato which has a creamy lemon curd-like center. Really really really nice.
|Raspberry Doughnut Muffin and Lemon Gelato Muffin|
The grown-up at the table, Karen, orders a coffee which Ragamuffin make on an old-style lever coffee machine. This is a coffee like no other I've seen, Arancino is an espresso with fresh orange slices, sugar and a pinch of salt. I take one sip and it's enough to keep me awake until at least midnight.
Ragamuffin is at 157 Norton St Leichhardt, Sydney.