Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Smitten Kitchen and Gourmet: Pumpkin Muffins

Well, it's fall. And fall means cold nights, frost on my car in the morning, bags of apples at the grocery store, and pumpkin everywhere. It means cinnamon brooms by the door of the grocery store that make the whole place smell like spices. Getting into the spirit of the season means making at least a couple things out of pumpkin, and I am more than pleased to oblige, since I love pumpkin.

Pumpkin Muffins
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen and Gourmet magazine, November 2006, as adapted from The American Club in Kohler, WI

1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup pumpkin puree (unflavored canned pumpkin is fine)
⅓ cup canola oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice OR ½ teaspoon cinnamon plus ¼ teaspoon ground ginger plus ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1¼ cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon plus 1 tablespoon sugar for topping OR unsalted sunflower seeds

Preheat oven to 350°F. Put liners in cups of a muffin pan. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Whisk together pumpkin, oil, eggs, spice, and sugar in a large bowl until smooth, then whisk in flour mixture until just combined. If desired, stir together cinnamon and 1 tablespoon sugar in another bowl. Divide batter among muffin cups, then sprinkle tops with cinnamon-sugar mixture or sunflower seeds. Bake until slightly browned and wooden pick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes.

Cool in pan on a rack 5 minutes, then transfer muffins from pan to rack to cool.

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