Saturday, September 25, 2010

Apple muffins

Thursday was a holiday here in Japan, Shobun no hi- what's that mean?  It's the autumnal equinox, the start of fall.  Well, as far as dates are concerned, it is the official start of fall, but as far as weather is concerned, we are still wearing shorts and my kids were diving into the pool after dinner Wednesday night.  Luckily, Thursday and Friday, the sun was not able to show it's full strength because it was hidden behind some clouds, so it almost felt fall-like with temps only reaching a high of 75'.  It definitely felt like a day to start making apple and pumpkin related food.

My neighbor always sends me links to food blogs, she knows I like to cook, but maybe they are hints.  Anyways, the one she sent me this week had a recipe for Apple Whole Wheat muffins.  I am always looking for good muffin recipes and I LOVE apples.  I broke out my flour mill, ground up some fresh whole wheat flour, with the help of Nathaniel, and got to work.

For the muffins:  (adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
1 cup wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBSP cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup buttermilk or yogurt
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 large apples, peeled, cored, and finely cut up

1/4 cup brown sugar


1) Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon, set aside.
2) Cream butter and sugars in mixer with paddle attachment, scrape from sides of bowl, add the egg.
3) Here she added the buttermilk to the butter/sugar mixture slowly and warned if you mix too much, it could curdle, I got nervous, switched to the whisk attachment and mixed gently, but not all the milk was incorporated.  I think for the future when I make these, I will alternate additions of milk and flour mixture.
4) Add flour mixture until mixed.
5) I added the vanilla on my own, it was not in the original recipe, there's just something to me about vanilla in almost all my baked goods :)
6) Fold in the apple pieces.  ( I used 2 very large apples, so in the end, I only added about 1.5 apples, don't skimp like I did- add the pieces from both.  I also ground them in my food processor until they were very small.  I don't typically like pieces of fruit in my baked goods, but I think next time I will make the apple pieces a bit larger, so they are noticeably present).
7) Scoop batter into muffin tins, take 1/4 cup brown sugar and crumble on top of batter before baking.
8) Bake at 450' for 10 minutes, then turn oven down to 400' for the last 5 minutes of baking.  ( I made 9 large muffins and 24 mini muffins- the mini muffins were done after the first 10 minutes of baking).

Enjoy!  My batch is almost gone and it hasn't even been 24 hours!

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