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aniseed myrtle and gin cupcakes

The place where I work has a morning tea to celebrate Reconciliation Day. It won’t surprise you to know I often bring baked goods to work anyway, and for events celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, I like to make something  using bush tucker ingredients – I’ve posted a few recipes previously with blood limes and sea vegetables.

whisk together dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately

mix together until just combined

I’ve previously told you about these citrus olive oil muffins, and decided for this year’s morning tea to see how they would work with aniseed myrtle flavouring instead. Aniseed myrtle is a small rainforest tree native to Australia with the most amazing aniseed flavour to its leaves. I found the herbal flavour of gin complements it beautifully, and if you’re a liquorice fan, these are a must try.

remove from tin straight away

cool on a rack

I bought the aniseed myrtle leaves and essential oil here, but there are certainly other suppliers. If you’re not in Australia and can’t buy online, you could try with ground aniseed, and perhaps an aniseed essence or liqueur. So, have you cooked with bush tucker ingredients, and which is your favourite?

store in an airtight container once glaze is set

Aniseed myrtle & gin muffins

Inspired by a recipe by David Leibowitz

  • 185g plain flour
  • 200g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp bicarb soda
  • 1 tsp flaky sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground aniseed myrtle leaves
  • 180ml full cream milk
  • 180ml good olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbs lemon juice
  • 4-8 drops aniseed myrtle oil (depending how strong you like it)
  • 2 Tbs gin

For glaze

  • 2 tsp gin
  • 2 drops aniseed myrtle oil
  • 100g icing sugar
  • water to thin (about 3 tsp)

For glaze: stir together gin and oil, add icing sugar, and enough water to make a thick drizzling consistency.

Preheat oven to 180C (350F).  Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, myrtle leaves and salt in a large bowl.  In a large measuring jug, combine milk, oil, eggs, juice, gin, and myrtle oil if using, and whisk together well.

Gently fold wet ingredients into dry with a rubber spatula, and mix until just combined.  It will be quite a liquid batter.  Scoop into a 12 cup muffin tin lined with paper or silicon liners.  Bake for approximately 25 minutes until golden around the edges and a tester comes out clean.  Turn out onto a rack, and leave to cool.  Drizzle randomly with the glaze and allow it to set firm.

They store well at room temperature for several days.

Makes 12