Ground Cherry-Lime Muffins

This is a none-too-sweet, subtly flavored, old-fashioned muffin. By old-fashioned, I mean that it’s not filled with 14 cups of sugar per muffin. Seriously, a really sweet “muffin” is a cupcake. And if that’s what you want, just order a stinkin’ cupcake. And by old-fashioned, I also mean that it’s not the size of a basketball. This is a muffin meant to serve one, not an entire kindergarten class.

Ground cherries do not have an oomphy, up-front flavor. Rather, they are more delicate-tasting, with tropical notes. The lime, also fairly subtle, adds a bit of tang. I like these with a cup of herbal tea in the afternoon. And, if well wrapped, the muffins freeze beautifully.

Makes 12 muffins

What You’ll Need

  • two bowls, one large and one smaller
  • measuring cups, solid and liquid
  • measuring spoons
  • spoons for mixing
  • grater (Microplane#&174 or a box grater)
  • 12-cup muffin tin
  • muffin/cupcake liners
  • small saucepan
  • pastry brush


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 Tbsp sugar, divided
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder, preferably non-aluminum like Rumford
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg, beaten lightly
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • grated zest of 1 lime
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1 cup ground cherries, husked, rinsed, and dried
  • 3 Tbsp water
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice

How to Make the Muffins

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C).
  2. Place a cupcake liner in each muffin cup of your muffin tin. Alternately, you can grease the cups with butter.
  3. Place the flour, 3 Tbsp of the sugar, the baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and mix well.
  4. DryIngredients

  5. Melt the butter in a small saucepan or in the microwave.
  6. In a smaller bowl, add the egg, vanilla extract, buttermilk, half-and-half, butter, and lime zest, again mixing well.
  7. WetIngredients

  8. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and quickly mix together. Take care not to overmix the batter—it’s okay if you see a few dry spots.
  9. Carefully mix in the ground cherries. The batter will be stiff.
  10. Divide equally into the muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 full.
  11. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  12. While the muffins are baking, make a light lime glaze. Put 3 Tbsp of water, 2 Tbsp of sugar, and 1 Tbsp of lime juice in a small saucepan. Over medium heat, stir until the sugar is dissolved. Let the mixture come to a boil, and boil for about 4 minutes, reducing it somewhat—it’ll become a syrupy glaze.
  13. CookingGlaze

  14. When the muffins are done, remove them and place on a rack. Lightly brush the tops with the lime glaze. Serve warm or at room temperature.



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