Muffins do no real good in the world. With limited nutritional value they are often superfluousness to entrees and main dishes and are easily trumped by, say, omelettes, any complex hash, or a fish that has been smoked or poached. And yet muffins are able to stir emotions. There is a voice from the gallery that honors the muffin. I have heard that voice which again and again (and I think mistakenly) attaches great import and affection to the muffins I make every morning at the bnb. I always emphasize that the recipe isn’t mine but that has little effect on the voice.
Says Amanda in a review: You’ll get the best view, extreme comfort, warm fresh food (such as MUFFINS!)…
Tricia in a Facebook IM: CURT!! We are dying for your muffins…
David in email today: Nice drive along the coast, sustained by the great Feldman muffins…
The recipe is so utterly simple I have to blush.
For six muffins:
In a bowl combine 1.5 cups flour, 2 teaspoons of baking powder, a third to a half cup of brown sugar and a pinch of salt. Mix well.
In a measuring cup and in the following order add: 1/3 a cup of canola oil, an egg, fill to a full cup (8 oz.) with milk.
Stir to mix the wet ingredients, then pour that over the dry and mix until just smooth.
Consistency is absolutely key. Silky smooth and moist is too wet. The mix should be dry enough to pull apart when you make peaks and expose wee air bubbles. Bakers know this look…others, be sure the mix can hold a bit of form as you mix. More dry than wet is one of the keys to this recipe.
Just after the wet and dry are mixed, add your fruit and nuts. Options include banana-walnuts-coconut flakes, blackberries, blueberries, apple-walnut-cinnamon. Consider the handful and variations therein as guidelines for amounts.
Dollop the dough into a greased muffin pan (I fill to about even with the top of each cup), sprinkle about a teaspoon worth of brown sugar on to the rounded tops of each uncooked muffin and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes, then turn your baking dish 180 degrees and bake for another 10 minutes.
Cooked-ness (which equates to the consistency/lightness/moistness of the cooked muffin) is also key and you need to manage this to your own liking. Note: The weight of the muffin pan will be considerably lighter after the muffins have cooked through so be sensitive to the pan’s weight as you put it into the oven to bake.
True, there is much decision-making as to what the perfect amount of time is in the oven. No recipe can insure you will get that part absolutely right so practice this recipe until you get a feel for the weight of the pan (of your cooked muffins) and the final product/cooked muffins’ sponginess (or not) to indicate fully cooked.
Voila…perfectly baked muffins.
(** double the ingredients for a full dozen; web search “to die for muffins” to see the original recipe, don’t be afraid to be creative when it comes to fruit, nuts, jazz up the ingredient .)