Monday, November 17, 2008

Walnut Apple Muffins, with Streusel Topping

Jumbo Fluffy Walnut Apple Muffins

Yes, it's autumn. Yes, Thanksgiving is next week. And yes, you have all kinds of goodies planned: turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, beans... And that's all great! I'm as excited as you are to start cooking and, most important, start eating.

Dinner is going to be mahvelous, of course. Your midnight snack is taken care of, too. Friday's lunch probably has your mouth watering - leftover Thanksgiving on a Sandwich sandwiches! But what about Friday's breakfast? After you've gorged yourself during Thanksgiving dinner, and added insult to injury with that midnight snack, your tummy might need a break the next morning. Well not too much of a break. It is a holiday weekend, afterall, so sweets must be involved. Plus, you need your energy to hit all those Black Friday sales, right? These muffins are just the thing.

You will love making them because they're a breeze. Your family will love eating them because hello? Apples? Sugar? Walnuts? Does anything say autumn or breakfast or Thanksgiving more? Whip up a batch of these, along with a big pot of hot coffee, and kick the next season - Christmas! - off to a fabulous start.

Jumbo Fluffy Walnut Apple Muffins

Walnut-Apple Muffins, with Streusel Topping
Adapted from Allrecipes
Printer-friendly version

Muffin ingredients
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
2 cups peeled, cored and chopped apples
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup of dried cranberries, optional

Streusel topping ingredients
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cold butter, cubed

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat top and insides of muffin pan with cooking spray, or use paper liners.
2. To make cinnamon crumble: In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, and 2 tablespoons cubed butter. Mix together using a pastry blender, or two butter knives. Topping should resemble small peas.
3. To make muffins: In a large bowl, cream 1/2 cup butter, 1 1/4 cups sugar, vanilla, and salt until light and fluffy, three to five minutes. Beat in eggs, one at time, mixing well after each addition.
4. In separate bowl, whisk together 1 3/4 cups of flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. Stir dry ingredients into the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, mixing until just combined. Fold in apples and walnuts. Fill muffin cups to 3/4 full. Lightly sprinkle tops with cinnamon crumble.
5. Bake 30 minutes, or until tops are golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. If they are browning too quickly, cover with tin foil. Remove from pans, and cool on wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.