Monday, 20 April 2015

To-Die-For Apple Muffins


Muffins are the easiest thing to do. In fact, if you have just started baking and do not own any mixer yet, muffins are the way to go! When I started baking about 5 years ago, muffins were the first thing I baked, Chocolate Chips Muffins actually. ;)

Even these days, after many, many batches of breads and cupcakes, I'd still love to make muffins because it is so easy and quick to whip up. It's kinda like an omelette that you can make with whatever leftover vegetables or items (edible ones) that you have in the fridge that still magically tastes decent. Well, my friends will tell you that anything made with egg will taste good to me (rolling my eyes with a big grin)

Baking calms me and whenever my hand itches, I will instantly try to think of any kind of muffins that I can make with whatever ingredients that I have on hand. And my kids absolutely adores muffins, so that's a big motivation. 

Just a trivia here, when I started baking, I actually didn't know that there are differences between what we call a "Muffin" and a "Cupcake". Did you know that??? Well, I didn't until I made a couple of rounds of "muffins" and interchangeably calling it cupcakes. 

What I found out (or remember rather) is that muffins are kind of like a mix breed of Bread and Cake. While, cupcakes, are just like the name states, a cake in a cup. Their texture is different. To generalize, muffins tend to be more dense and look coarser as opposed to cupcakes that has a more soft, fluffier, fine and uniform texture. But the most obvious differentiating factor for me is that, muffins can be mixed with a simple wire whisk or spoon or spatula while cupcakes needs the help of a mixer. While we can debate on this matter, but one thing is for sure, they are both delicious and definitely a crowd pleaser.

The recipe that I am sharing here is based on a recipe that I found in the early days of my baking. The title of the recipe will be make you want to try making 'em. "To-Die-For" is a very strong statement & you'd probably doubt it like me and will make it just to prove the name wrong. Haha! 

But, OMG, the blueberries muffins that I made was surprisingly good! The muffins were denser than cakes, but these are really soft. Perhaps the buttermilk that I used instead of milk helped. 

The flavor is amazing as you get sweet and savory at the same time. And depending on what fruit you are using, the cake is neutral enough to not compete with fruit. Just make these and you will understand what I mean. Even my MIL said it was very, very delicious at the first bite. Big grins and feeling floaty...

The below recipe was made with a few of my own adjustments. I guess after baking for a few years, you get confident enough to come out with your own recipes and ways of substituting parts of the ingredients and know that it will work. Just keep in mind to substitute dry ingredients with something dry and wet with wet. It's about balance. 

Made with easy ingredients, the Apple Muffins were very tasty and my kids really loved it. You know, kids are very straightforward creatures. When it comes to food, either they won't touch it or they won't stop eating it. It was the latter when it comes to these To-Die-For Apple Muffins! I am a very happy Mama that day.

Ingredients:
1 ½ Cups All Purpose Flour (I used 192g
¾ Cup Caster Sugar (I used 115g
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
½ Teaspoon Salt
1 Cup Green Apples (diced and mixed well with ½ tablespoon of sugar, keep asideYou can use blueberries or other fruits. You can add ½ teaspoon of cinnamon if preferred. I didn’t as I wanted the apple flavor to be the focal flavor)
1/3 Cup Vegetable oil
1 Egg
1/3 Buttermilk
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Topping:
½ Cup Walnuts (Amount as preferred)
¼ Cup Green Apples

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
2. Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder and mix well
3. Fold in diced apple. (Tip: To have the fruits evenly distributed and not sink after baking, coat the fruits with flour. If you fold in the fruits into the wet batter, the chances are the fruits will sink. There will be some liquid after resting, discard the water. Freezing the fruits ahead or using frozen fruits works well too without adding unnecessary moisture. Frozen berries will prevent too much “bleeding” and ensures a “clean” cake color.)
4. Place vegetable oil into a measuring cup; add the egg and enough buttermilk to make up to one cup. Add the vanilla extract. Give the mixture a stir to combine.
5. Pour this with into the dry ingredients and mix the batter with the fewest strokes possible. (Tip: Batter must not be over mixed. The batter will be thick and lumpy or even with some streaks of flour remaining. This is what we want for fluffy muffins.)
6. Fill muffin cups right to the top, and sprinkle with some diced apple and place pieces of walnut on top. (This will result in an over the top, glorious Café-styled muffins. If you prefer regular rounded top ones, you can fill up to ¾ cup)
7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done. Rest the muffins for a few hours, IF you can resist biting into it immediately. The muffins become very soft and remain fluffy the next day. 

Recipe adapted from:

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/to-die-for-blueberry-muffins/

2 comments:

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  2. Jie jie, i tried this recipe just now. It work out perfectly. Thanks again for sharing this lovely recipe.

    Best regards,
    Shin Ying

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