Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Crown Muffin Pan

I just got a new muffin pan from Williams-Sonoma that I am really excited about testing out. It is a Crown Muffin Pan that is designed to make big muffins with the fabulous, excessive top like you get at a bakery. Of course it is just an excuse for more streusel topping!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Chocolate Bran Muffins

These muffins come out a delicious looking dark chocolately brown color. They have high fiber cereal and some whole wheat flour in them so I feel good giving them to the kids.

1 cup bran cereal
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup oil
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
1/2 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat 12 regular sized muffin cups with butter.

lace the cereal in a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin, or crush in a food processor.

In a medium bowl mix the cereal and buttermilk, let that stand for 5 minutes. Stir in the oil, egg and vanilla.

In another bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients and then add the cereal mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Divide batter evenly between 12 muffin cups. 

Bake for 16-20 minutes. 

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

This round of pumpkin muffins I am just trying to make the best tasting muffin I can, not worrying about making them healthy. They turned out quite well. They looked great and were delicious. 

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
6 Tbs. melted butter
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup applesauce
1 Tbs. molasses
1 t. vanilla

1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp allspice

Streusel Topping
1/4 cup flour
1 Tbs sugar
4 T brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbs. melted butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin pans with non-stick spray. 

Topping: Combine all the dry ingredients. Add melted butter and stir until crumbly. Put in refrigerator until needed.

In a  large bowl, mix the first 7 ingredients until smooth. In another bowl, mix all the dry ingredients. Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients and mix with a spoon until just incorporated. 

Fill muffin cups and sprinkle with the topping. Bake on center rack for 18-20 minutes. 

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Berry Streusel Bars (more sneaky bran)

Here is another attempt to sneak in some fiber. I thought they were delicious, but my husband wasn't crazy about them. The original recipe is from the Kellogg's All Bran site. Next time I think I would add some additional fruit, maybe sprinkle fresh berries on the jam.

Berry Streusel Bars

1 cup Bran cereal
1.5 cups flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup butter, cold
3 T water
2/3 cup spreadable fruit jam
1 Tbs melted butter

1. In a food processor combine the cereal, flour, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add water and pulse. Mixture will be crumbly.

2. Remove 1 cup of mixture and set aside for the topping. With the back of a spoon, press the remaining mixture into the bottom of a 9x11" pan coated with cooking spray.

3. Carefully spread the fruit over the cereal mixture in the bottom of the pan. Add 1 tablespoon melted butter to the reserved topping and then sprinkle over the fruit. 

4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until lightly browned. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Buttermilk Bran Muffins

My current project is to try to find a bran muffin that even my husband and kids will like. They are all pretty much a strictly "blueberry muffin with streusel crowd".  

The first one I tried was from the "Fiber One" website, since that was the brand of bran cereal that I had in the cupboard. They turned out pretty well. My husband liked them a lot but the kids were not too convinced. I did change a few things in the recipe, so you can see the original recipe on their site if you like. The second time I made these I added raisins and now even the kids love them.

I would definitely make these again. They are great to have around when you want a snack or a breakfast to grab on the go. 

Buttermilk Bran Muffins
1 3/4 cup bran cereal
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup raisons

1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. 
2. Crush the cereal in a plastic bag with a rolling pin, or in the food processor, which is much easier. In a bowl, stir the cereal, buttermilk and vanilla together until well mixed. Beat in the oil and egg.
3. In another bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Add to the cereal mixture until just moistened. Add raisins.
4. Spoon into 12 muffin cups, greased with cooking spray.
5. Bake 18-22 minutes 

Pumpkin Muffin Trials

My mother has always made the most wonderful pumpkin bread, so I am using that as my starting recipe. I am trying to make it into muffins that are a little bit healthier, but still as delicious. 

Here is the original recipe:

Mom's Pumpkin Bread
3 cup sugar
1 cup corn oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 can (15oz) pumpkin
3 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp nutmeg

Mix sugar, oil and eggs.
Add pumpkin and mix well.
Add flour/spices and mix well. 
Pour into greased loaf pans.
3 large size foil pans, bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes
5 small loaf pans, bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes

I cut the recipe in half, so now it makes about 12 average size muffins. Then I added some bran, cut down the sugar and substituted lowfat buttermilk for half the oil. They turned out pretty well. Next time I think I might try adding a little molasses to see what that would do. 

Pumpkin Bran Muffins
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup corn oil
1/4 cup lowfat buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup pumpkin puree

1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup bran buds
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground cloves
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Mix bran cereal with buttermilk and let soften for 5 minutes.  
Mix together remaining dry ingredients and set aside.
Mix sugars, oil and eggs, add bran/buttermilk.
Add dry ingredients and mix.

Bake in greased muffin tins for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Monday, July 21, 2008

First Post

So, a little about myself to start. I am an artist, former gallery director, and currently a jeweler. My side passion has always been baking. 

I usually get obsessed with a particular type of recipe and work on it till I find one that I really like. A few months ago it was rice pudding, which is not really baking, but I think the real defining point is sugar, not the oven. 

I like to use quality ingredients, which I think makes a huge difference in the outcome. I also have a tendency to try to make recipes a little more healthy, ie: less fat & sugar, which drives my husband crazy. Lately I have been trying to sneak fiber in everywhere.

So, mostly this blog will be devoted to baking recipes, with the occasional side project.