Monday, January 17, 2011

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

Have you ever heard of "doughnut muffins"?  Apparently they're all the rage.  I came across this recipe several months ago over at Tasty Kitchen.  I keep a running list of recipes to try and yesterday morning for our college Bible study was the time to try them out.  I had some leftover sugar pumpkin puree from November in my freezer that really needed to be used.  :)

1 1/2 cups All Purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 stick butter
1 whole egg
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup milk
1 stick butter, melted
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350.
Stir together all of the dry ingredients and set aside.
In a separate bowl, cream the sugar, butter, and egg.  Then mix in the pumpkin and vanilla.
Alternate adding the dry mixture and the milk to the wet mixture.  Be careful not to overmix.

You can either make regular sized muffins and bake for 20-25 minutes or mini muffins [what I did] which will need to bake for 12-15 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.  I ended up with 32 mini muffins.  It is important to note that you do not need to use muffin liners.  Just make sure your pan has been oiled before filling with the batter.

For the topping, you'll want to have the butter melting on the stove over a low heat while the muffins are baking.  In a bowl big enough for dipping the muffins into, mix together the sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon.  Once the muffins have come out of the oven and cooled for a couple minutes, dump them out on the counter so you don't burn your little fingertips on the muffin tin trying to get them out.  The original recipe suggests dunking the entire muffin in the melted butter and then rolling in the spiced sugar.  I just dipped the top in for time's sake, but you can do whatever you want because you're the boss when you're cooking. 

Cook's Notes:
You can substitute whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour in place of half of the all purpose flour.  You could also avoid the processed white sugar by using organic turbinado or even sucanat.  These aren't calorie free, but there is a way to make them a little "better".  Also, I never have pumpkin pie spice on hand so I just used cinnamon and a dash of cloves.

I know it's hard to find canned pumpkin this time of year [if you don't have some in your freezer] but I am quite sure you could substitute banana, sweet potato, or even applesauce. 

These "muffins" are the most moist and delicious that I have ever tasted, and they were a BIG hit with the college students!  I would definitely say that this is something you've GOT to make.  The texture is amazing and well, just try it!

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