I love these muffins from my Moosewood Restaurant cookbook. They are the only baking I have done in the last few years with any kind of confidence. I hope I have time next Saturday to make them for Mother’s Day brunch. If not, I’m going to have to find another excuse to make them very soon.
Adapted from moosewood restaurant new classics
streusel topping (optional)
1/3 cup unbleached white flour
1 1/2 Tbsp. cold butter, chopped into small pieces
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of salt
6 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. milk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups chopped fruit, and/or nuts, and/or chocolate chips*
2 cups unbleached white all-purpose or pastry flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon or other spice (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°. Prepare a 12-cup muffin tin (oil the cups or use liners).
If you want topping, mix together all the streusel ingredients and blend with a fork until the butter is pea-sized or smaller. Set aside. (RPM note: the streusel is a bit of a pain to put together, but it makes the muffins look store-bought. So pretty!)
In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg, then the milk and vanilla; the mixture will look lumpy. With a rubber spatula, fold in the fruit and/or nuts and/or chocolate chips. Set aside.
In a separate large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon (if using) and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold together with a rubber spatula. Don’t over mix. Spoon about 1/3 cup of the batter into each muffin cup. Sprinkle the top with streusel if using, about 1 tablespoon.
Place muffins in oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until puffed and golden. After 20 minutes, rotate the muffin tin in the oven to ensure even baking.
Remove the muffins from the oven and place the tins on a rack to cool for about 15 minutes. Hot muffins are soft and may fall apart if handled too soon. Serve warm or cool completely and store in a sealed container at room temperature.
* Variations: Use 2 cups of chopped fruit; or 1 cup fruit, 1/2 cup nuts, and 1/2 cup chocolate chips; or 1/2 cup nuts or chocolate chips and 1 1/2 cups fruit. Fruit should be chopped into pieces large enough to be recognizable. RPM note: I know I did strawberry muffins; I also did banana chocolate chip. Both were a huge, huge hit. I don’t remember what else I’ve come up with, but I’ve made this recipe a number of times, always with success judging from my own enjoyment of them & the compliments I’ve received. They keep well overnight, too, so it’s easy enough to do them the night before.