I once had a version of these in the Konditor and Cook cafe section of the Curzon Cinema in Soho. These are simultaneously healthier (wholemeal flour) and more indulgent (more cheese). You can of course use whatever kind of cheese you like. These are good cold and can be frozen for up to a month. They are especially delicious hot from the oven, the steaming fluffy spinach bread giving way to oozing molten cheese centres.
- 25g butter, plus extra for greasing
- 200ml milk
- 200g spinach
- 250g wholemeal flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Good pinch of cayenne pepper
- 50g fresh Parmesan, finely grated
- 1 egg, lightlybeaten
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ nutmeg
- 200g gruyerecheese, cubed
1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/fan170°C/gas 5. Lightly grease a deep muffin tin with a little butter.
2. Place the milk and butter in a large pan over a high heat. When the butter has melted, stir in the spinach and bring just to the boil. Remove from the heat and pour into a liquidiser or food processor. Whizz until the spinach is finely chopped. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
3. Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Add the cayenne and some freshly ground black pepper. Stir in the Parmesan. Add the egg and the spinach mixture, then beat with a wooden spoon until just mixed. Divide between 9 muffin holes, filling each about half full.
4. Add a cube of cheese to each muffin hole. Top with the remaining mixture, followed by a little more cheese, pushing the cheese down into each mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until risen and firm to the touch. Leave to cool for 5 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack.
Serve hot or cold.