Beyond the Basics: Adding Goodies to Your Muffins
Includes: “How to Get Your Muffins Out of the Pan without Breaking”
What’s not to like about a warm honey bran muffin with great jam?
Cinnamon Chip Bran Muffins. To a mix for 12 large high-domed muffins, we added one cup cinnamon chips. They tasted great, no—fantastic. But as the chips melted, we got a little spread and overhang around the rims. We solved that problem; we cut the water back a quarter cup and made 15 muffins instead of twelve so the cups weren’t quite so full. Perfect.
Apple Cranberry Bran Muffins. To a mix for 12 large high-domed muffins, we added 3/4 cup diced apples and 3/4 cup dried cranberries plus a teaspoon of Vietnamese cinnamon, The cranberries overpowered the apples so we added a teaspoon of apple flavor to the next batch. Perfect. The Vietnamese cinnamon really adds a nice touch.
Ginger Pear Bran Muffins. Pears have such a mild flavor; it’s hard to get them to stand out. Instead we left them in the background, a nice sweet orchard taste, and let the candied ginger do the heavy lifting. We added 3/4 cup dried pears and 3/4 cup small diced candied ginger.
Carrot Cake Bran Muffins. Great muffins. We used 3/4 cup grated carrots, one teaspoon of cassia cinnamon, and 3/4 cup chopped walnuts. They’re not sweet like a carrot cake. Don’t be tempted to add more sugar—you’ll upset the balance and they’ll spread. Use a jam or jelly to make them sweeter.
Cranberry Nut Bran Muffins. These are my favorites—but then I like cranberries and I like nuts. Add 3/4 cup dried cranberries and 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans.
Pineapple Coconut Bran Muffins. These are the muffins that made Kelli the Baker’s husband a bran muffin convert. We drained crushed coconut and added 3/4 cup plus 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut.
Candied Ginger Bran Muffins. These are the ginger pear muffins without the pears. We added 3/4 cup candied ginger.
Other muffins: We meant to experiment with ginger apple plus some pumpkin muffins—ginger pumpkin, pumpkin raisin, and pumpkin nut—but didn’t get that far. If you try these variations, let us know what you think.
Suggestion: Get a soft bladed silicone spatula
This is my secret weapon. I use it all the time. The soft blade bends around the corner of bread pans and muffin pans to break free those sticky goodies. And it’ll never scratch your expensive bakeware. Williams Sonoma has them.