26 February 2011

apple & pear muffins

I love muffins.  Not store-bought ones or even the ones in the fancy cafes around town, but the homemade ones.  There must be tens and hundreds of different muffin flavour combinations, and I never seem to be able to find just the right one at the right time.  I'd be hankering for an orange and date muffin, but the cafe I'm in only has chocolate or cheese.  Know what I mean?  With homemade muffins, I bake exactly what I feel like eating.

And then, there's the baking itself.  Muffins are, only, the, most easiest and fun-est thing to bake!  Pretty fail proof even for a novice homebaker like me.

So tonight I felt like some sweet muffins.  The last lot of muffins I made had blueberries, wholemeal and oats in them.  I made them for 'S' because he doesn't like sweet muffins.  They were yummy, but they were also FAR too healthy.  My body's craving the sugar!  So I rustled up a batch of pear and apple muffins and topped some of them with bits of chocolate.  The recipe called for apples only, but I didn't have enough so I made the rest up with some pears I had.  And I tweaked the spices as well.

Apple & Pear Muffins
Adapted from: Allyson Gofton's Apple Muffins recipe

Dry mix:
3 cups flour
2 tablespoon baking power
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3/4 cup caster sugar (can substitute with raw sugar)

Wet mix:
100g butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cup milk (I used light soy milk)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (if you have vanilla essence, use 1 teaspoon)
3/4 cup canned diced apple
3/4 cup canned diced pear
(Or you can use 1 1/2 cup of just one type of fruit.  You can also use a mix of fresh and canned fruit, which is what I did and it turned out fine).

Topping (optional):
Walnut halves or chocolate sprinkles

  1. Preheat oven at 220 degrees celsius (about 425 degrees F).
  2. Prep your muffin tray. I always use muffin or cupcake paper cases and line my muffin tray with them.  That way, it makes for easy removal of the muffins and easy cleaning of your tray.  If you use these paper cases to line your muffin tray, there's no need for oiling your try or cases.
  3. Melt the butter and put aside to cool.
  4. In a large bowl, sift all the Dry Mix ingredients together: flour, baking powder, sugar and spices.
  5. In a smaller bowl, mix the Wet Mix ingredients together - except the butter.
  6. Make a well in the centre of the dry mix and pour the wet mix and butter into the centre.
  7. Gently fold in the dry mix with the wet mix. Don't over mix. If the mixture looks lumpy, that's okay.
  8. Fill the paper cases up to 3/4 full.
  9. Decorate each muffin top with a walnut half, or top with chocolate sprinkles.
  10. Bake for 15-20 mins, until risen, a little golden and cooked.
  11. Remove and stand for 5 mins before transferring the muffins onto a rack to cool completely.



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