It’s easy to get wrapped up in going here, doing this and yelling at the person cutting you off while inching forward in rush hour traffic so the red Honda Civic doesn’t merge in front of you, and then something happens. You see an old lady struggling to her car with a big bag of groceries and an unprompted teenage boy walks over to help her. The front desk assistant at your local health club remembers to ask about your daughter’s softball game.
For me, I was out running. I was three miles from home, tripped on a root and twisted my ankle. With my fingernails digging into the dirt, a black SUV pulled up and a man looked at me, his son peering out the back window. “You okay?” he asked.
I nodded, my fingers still digging into the dirt.
“You want a ride?”
Swallowing hard, I looked up. “Do you mind?”
He smiled. “Not at all. I’ve done that in the same spot. Where are you going?”
My plan was to finish my 9-mile run at Safeway, so I could buy flour and walk home for my cool down. The reality was he dropped his son off at home and then me. I hobbled out of his car and up three flights of stairs to my apartment. I don’t know his name, or much of anything except where he lives, but in the end Jujus got flour and I made these Lemon Basil muffins.
I’m pretty sure I think basil is one of the most amazing thing in the world and paired with lemon, it’s just the thing to say thank you. Monday, armed with a Tupperware full of muffins and a note, I plan to drive back to his house. Maybe Monday I’ll let the red Honda Civic in with room to spare. Maybe….
Lemon Basil Muffins
2 cups flour
½ cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 TBS baking powder
1 tsp salt
½ cup butter, melted
½ cup fresh lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
3 TBS fresh basil, finely minced
Simple Lemon Syrup
2 TBS fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup water
5 TBS sugar
2 TBS lemon zest (about 1 lemon)
Pre-heat oven to 350.
Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together.
Whisk butter, lemon juice, lemon zest, basil and eggs together.
Wisk wet ingredients into dry ingredients until just incorporated.
Grease a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Separate evenly between the 12 muffin tins.
Bake at 350 for 18 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove muffins and allow to cool completely.
In a small saucepan, bring lemon juice, water and sugar to a simmer. Reduce by half. Remove from heat, and whisk in lemon zest. Spoon syrup over muffins.