Saturday, January 29, 2011

Orange Cranberry Muffins - My Way!

I love muffins. Have your every heard the Jim Gaffigan piece where he says muffins are nothing but cake for breakfast? Oh, sad, but true. Luckily, they can be dressed up to be healthier and even taste good.

I can't take all the credit for these delicious muffins. Inspiration came from Finding Joy in My Kitchen. I strongly urge you to take a peak at her original recipe and some of the other fabulous from scratch goodies she is baking up. I have never been one to follow directions well though, so I played around and came up with my perfect version. I was able to work in wheat germ as well as ground flax seed.

Orange Cranberry Muffins
You will need:
for the muffins
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 c. brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. milk (I used rice milk)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 c. applesauce
  • 1/2 c. orange juice
  • 2 tsp. orange zest 
  • 2/3 c. whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 c. AP flour + 1 Tbsp for dusting cranberries
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp. vital wheat gluten (optional but great with whole wheat)
  • 1 Tbsp. ground flax seed
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1 c. fresh cranberries, chopped
  • 1/4 c. dried cranberries
Streusel Topping
  • 1/2 c. old fashioned oats
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp. wheat germ
  • 1 Tbsp. cold butter

Preheat the oven for 350 degrees. Grease your muffin tins or line with papers. Start with the topping, in a small bowl mix together everything but the butter. Then rub the butter into the topping till all is moistened. I usually pop this back into the fridge till the muffins are ready to be topped.

In a medium bowl mix together your first 7 ingredients. I juiced my own oranges, but it is not necessary.

In a large bowl whisk together the first 7 dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients and stir till the mixture is just combined. Use a Tbsp. of flour to dust your chopped fresh cranberries. This helps to soak up the excess juice and keep the berries from sinking to the bottom of your muffins. Be sure to dust off the excess flour. Then gently fold into your batter.

Fill muffin cups 2/3 full and sprinkle with topping. Bake for 15- 18 minutes at 350 degrees. Insert a toothpick to check.

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