Absolutely DELICIOUS Muffins

I can't believe it's taken me so long to post about these muffins. I have made them at least 15 times, and they've been delicious almost every time. (I tried a strawberry/balsamic version.. not delicious.) The problem with these muffins is that they always disappear too quickly for me to get a picture of them! Usually they're gone about 2 hours after we make them--my dormmates often find themselves drawn to the kitchen by the scent of these baking and how can I possibly deny them delicious muffins??

Cranberry walnut version
I made a similar muffin with cranberries a while back, but I've updated and perfected the recipe a bit, so I'd like to share it with you in its new improved form. I had applesauce on hand the first time I made this, so it was convenient to use. Most people don't keep homemade applesauce stocked, though. I decided to substitute the applesauce with milk, and I adjusted the balance of baking soda and baking powder to compensate for the change in acidity. It turned out quite well.

Apple rosemary version
I also decided to sacrifice the one-bowl appeal and use a pot for these as well. Although back in the dorm I'll probably go for the one-bowl method, if you have access to a heavy-bottomed pan and a stovetop, the rich, complex flavors from the browned butter really fill out the muffin.

The 400°F I used originally seemed a bit too high for these muffins. They tended to get very crisp outsides, before the muffin was fully set. I've dropped the temperature and increased baking time. If you're in a hurry, they'll still turn out at 400°F.

Finally, in addition to generalizing the fillings, I've also included an alternative for the milk—thoroughly mashed bananas. Use this whenever you have banana as filling!

Whole Wheat Muffin Base
makes 12 large muffins

Mixing bowl
Saucepan + butter stirrer
Stovetop, oven
Muffin tin + liners

0.75c unsalted butter
1c packed brown sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
0.5c milk (***or well-mashed banana, see notes)
1.5c white whole wheat flour
1.75t baking powder
0.25t baking soda
1c chopped nuts
2c filling*** (really, you can add up to 4c)

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Melt 0.25c of butter (half a stick) in a heavy bottom saucepan over medium heat, until the butter has browned.
3. Add the remaining butter and the brown sugar to the pan. Stir vigorously until the butter has melted, and the sugar and butter have combined into a homogenous, light brown goo. It will smell like caramel.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool while performing the next step. (If you wait to get your ingredients out until after this step, the butter/sugar will be cool enough once your batter is ready for it.)
5. Place the eggs, milk, flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a bowl.
6. Stir the butter+sugar mixture and add it to the batter once it has cooled enough. (You should be able to stick your finger in it. It will feel delightfully warm.)
7. Mix the ingredients together until they are somewhat homogenous (no big pockets of flour).
8. Add chopped nuts and the filling. Mix until incorporated.
9. Divide into lined muffin tins. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops spring back when pressed. If you want a golden, slightly crisp top, turn the oven up to 375°F for the last 5 minutes of baking.

- If you're using banana as your filling (e.g. banana walnut muffins), I recommend using well-mashed banana instead of milk. It will help incorporate the flavor into the batter.
- You can use anything you want as filling. I've done cranberry walnut, and we also did chocolate chip hazelnut. I would also recommend dried or pitted fresh cherries. Apple chunks would also be great (especially with some cinnamon added to the batter!)
- If your filling is dry, like chocolate chips, or dried cherries, you might want to increase the milk to 1c. The cranberries from the original recipe add a lot of moisture.
- I tried an apple rosemary version, and they were incredibly popular.

Let me know how your version turns out! Mine have been a hit every time.

What's your favorite kind of muffin? How did you find the recipe? Leave a comment and let me know!

1 comment:

  1. They do look good, I had the same problem in college. If I baked something, it was like folks had their noses to the hall. All of a sudden my room became the popular place and all the yummy baked goods just disappeared.


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