Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Punkin Muffins

 

It’s fall y’all. I’ll bake pumpkin recipes till I’m blue -er, orange in the face.

I am also one who fully believes I can wish cooler weather upon us. With the taste of fall a few days last week, I feel the need to keep it going. I think if we all bake enough pumpkin, cinnamon, and spiced goods, we can actually will cooler temperatures to come. Hey, no need to burst my bubble!

With the holidays quickly approaching, I have to ask: does anyone else hate pumpkin pie?? Am I the only one raising my hand? It really reminds me of…. cat food. I hope I’m not banished from every future holiday meal, but REALLY people, come ON, it’s just strange. I LOVE pumpkin flavor though, just not not the texture of Sheba, I mean Pumpkin, Pie. I remember every holiday as a little girl, everyone would be serving themselves up a big ol’ portion of pie, and I’d sneak into the kitchen and get me a cup of vanilla ice cream – with chocolate syrup. So… in years past, I have fulfilled my duty as kitchen baker to attempt every pumpkin filled baked good recipe I can get my oven mitts on. I have tried everything from Pumpkin Puffs, to Pumpkin Bars, and even Potato Pumpkin Dumplings. Don’t bother with that last one.

My favorite though, or one of them, are these Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins. When trying out various recipes, I especially like ones with buttermilk. By the way, if you’re ever out of buttermilk, add a tablespoon of vinegar to every cup of milk needed, and let it sit for ten minutes. Buttermilk gives these muffins, or any baked good, a finer crumb; it’s that soft, melt-in-your-mouth quality. In addition to it’s soft texture, the pumpkin of course gives way for extra moisture. With a muffin this tasty, I’m sure you could skip the spices, add chocolate chips, and have pumpkin-haters fooled. So, I combined a few different recipes over time, and have created a delicious muffin with a cream cheese filling. It’s not too sweet, so it works for breakfast, or even alongside a meal. The addition of a spiced cream cheese filling is what makes it extra special though. When I bake up a batch, I like to make a few without any cream cheese, so my breakfasts aren’t guilt ridden. Then I make a few with extra cream cheese filling, these I save for dessert. If you’re a plan-ahead baker like me, double the batch, and toss a dozen in the freezer, they freeze great!

 

Start by creaming your butter and sugars thoroughly.

Add in the pumpkin and buttermilk.

Buttermilk allows for a finer crumb. mmmmm.

Two eggs please.
Gorgeous.

Some vanilla!

You know, on more than one occasion my brother and cousin convinced me to try vanilla. Plain. Why did I fall for it more than once?

We’ll never know.

I dump in all my flour and spices, all at once.

Stir just enough to combine.

Plop those gorgeous dollops of batter into your muffin tins.

I’m liking my silicone muffin tin very much, thank you!

Meanwhile, make your cream cheese filling. Cream cheese, powdered sugar, spices, and an egg.

Plop a spoonful on top of your batter.

Bake!

Viola!

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Punkin Muffins

Ingredients:

1/4 cups unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup canned pumpkin
2 eggs
2 tablespoon molasses
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups flour

for the filling:
8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch of cloves
pinch of giner

Directions:

Begin by creaming the butter and sugars in a bowl. Add the buttermilk and pumpkin and mix thoroughly. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Next, add the molasses and mix well. Add the dry ingredients all at once, and stir just until mixed. Be careful not to over-mix, or your muffins will be tough! For the filling, mix the cream cheese, egg, powdered sugar, and spices in a bowl. The filling will be thin, and yield more than needed for your muffins. Grease 12 muffin tins, and fill 1/2 to 2/3 full with pumpkin mixture. Then, drop a tablespoonful of the cream cheese mixture in each cup. Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Enjoy!

~Peace, Love, and Punkins Ya’ll!

 

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