When we sit down to eat at this time of year, we should toast our hard-working farmers rather than the cooks. Picture: Deb Lindsey/The Washington Post

- Makes 12

This muffin batter is incredibly easy and creates tender muffins that aren’t too sweet.

Ingredients

1¼ cups flour
½ cup yellow cornmeal/polenta
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
8 tbs (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
¾ cup regular buttermilk
230g nectarines (from 1 large one or 2 small), pitted and cut into 1cm dice

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°degrees.  Line a 12-well, standard-size muffin pan with paper liners.
Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl, until well incorporated. Place the egg, melted butter and buttermilk in a large bowl and whisk well to combine.
Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and stir until just combined, then stir in the nectarines. Distribute the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, filling them all the way to the top. 
Bake (middle rack) for 30 minutes, until the muffins are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre of each one comes out clean.
Cool to room temperature before eating.  
To make Vegan, Gluten-Free muffins substitute your favourite all-purpose gluten-free baking mix for the flour. Instead of the eggs, butter and buttermilk, use 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds, 2 tablespoons water, ¼ cup unsweetened 
apple sauce, ¼ cup olive oil plus ½ cup of your favourite non-dairy milk.

Tips:

Try using any type of stone fruit (including cherries) in place of, or in addition to, the nectarines. For gluten-free and/or vegan bakers, try the variation below.
The muffins can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days.

The Washington Post