After such a success with the coffee cake last week, I've been on a bit of a breakfast baked goods kick. I enjoyed my slice of coffee cake and half grapefruit so much each morning, why not spend the time to make a batch of muffins or a loaf of bread over the weekend that you can enjoy for the remainder of the week?
My timing was perfectly aligned with Mark Bittman's Whole Wheat Muffin article in last week's Dining Section, so I knew exactly what I'd be making this weekend. His article is a basic method for whole wheat muffins, with a lot of room for experimentation and flavor additions. This is my favorite kind of recipe: it gives you a solid foundation upon which to work, but allows you to make decisions and additions that help you feel like you're making something that is your own.
The muffins were delicious, and the process so simple. I decided to use up the last of my frozen roasted pumpkin for the main flavor, and also added golden raisins and toasted walnuts. The recipe is very flexible - feel free to substitute the pumpkin for (as Bittman suggests) mashed bananas, apples, zucchini and the like. Add-ins like chocolate chips, nuts, dried cranberries, or coconut are another way to come up with an interesting flavor combination.
Whole Wheat Pumpkin Raisin Muffins
Adapted from Mark Bittman
1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
1/2 cup cooked pumpkin (canned is okay)
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup walnuts (toasted)
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Either butter or place paper linings in muffin tins (makes about eight muffins).
2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
3. In a medium bowl, beat egg. Whisk in melted butter (cooled), pumpkin, and buttermilk.
4. Fold wet ingredients into dry and mix until combined. Stir in raisins and walnuts and scoop into muffin tins.
5. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until muffins are pugged and turning golden brown on top.