Thursday, October 2, 2014

Back to Basics - The Early Days of Mausers and Muffins

It started with some muffins and an assortment of old firearms, including a couple of Mausers and a Swiss Karabiner.  Still, when all is said and done, it's hard to improve on just the basics.

Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

A pretty standard recipe out on the internet, these are tweeked just slightly, replacing the buttermilk with sour cream,  using extra vanilla and a little less poppyseed, and a lemon lime glaze that is not too sweet, not too boring.


 Muffins aren't difficult to make but there are some basics that can make the difference between a light delicate muffin and a muffin shaped ammo can.

(1)  Check the date.  Baking soda and baking powder, in particular, can effect the "rise" of a baked product if they are past the expiration date.

(2)  Use eggs that are at kitchen temperature (this works great with cakes as well).

(3)  Handle the muffin batter delicately. When flour is mixed with wet ingredients, strands of gluten protein in the flour stretch out and link up with other protein molecules. The more you mix, the stronger this gluten matrix is. That's great if you're making a bagel. Not so much, a muffin. The best method is to make a "well" (open space) in the middle of the bowl of the dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients to that and then carefully fold the dry ingredients into the filled well. You want to fold or stir JUST until the mixture is incorporated, there should still be some lumps, even some small dry lumps in it. 

(4)  The muffin tin should not be full. Use an ice cream scoop to fill the tins no more than 2/3 full.  Any empty tins should be filled up halfway with water.

(5)  Muffins need a good blast (of heat that is) as they start.  Do NOT open the oven the first ten minutes of baking and do NOT put the muffins in when the temperature is shy of the proper temperature, figuring you can just cook them an extra minute if needed.


(1)  Check the date.  If your Mauser is circa 1827 or 2006 or if it has Hello Kitty on the Stock it is NOT an authentic Mauser.

(2) A Mauser at kitchen temperature is easier to handle, but if you're shooting it in your kitchen you're liable to get in trouble with the spouse.

(3) Light and delicate is just going to get you knocked on your a**.  This is a gun that wants you to show it who is in charge. Your grip should be strong, the stock, firmly and solidly, placed against your shoulder.  If you want to pick up and play with something light and fluffy that can draw blood if mishandled, go buy a damn kitten.

(4) Stripper clips should be full not two/third full.  Refill as necessary.

(5) Mausers need a good blast every now and again.  Do not buy one in perfect working condition to have it sit in your closet.  Take it out and play with it.  You'd be surprised the people that will wander over when you have one around with the words. . . .

MMMMMM.  Mauser. . .