Thursday, May 10, 2012
Muffins, Muffins, Muffins!
I've been on a search for awhile, looking for the perfect raisin bran muffin to make for the family. I had to modify this one to get it exactly perfect. Who am I kidding? I'm a constant recipe tweaker!
My husband loves bran muffins and takes them to work as snacks. He will eat them plain, which is something I can't do - I prefer mine heated or toasted, cut in half, with a little bit of butter on there.
Bran muffins were actually one of the dishes that Le Spouse made before we got married. The only things he knows how to cook are: pancakes, spaghetti, and raisin bran muffins. The problem with his raisin bran muffins was that he made the recipe that was printed on a box of Kellogg's Raisin Bran. And the muffins that resulted from that recipe were small, inedible, rocklike lumps that I couldn't stand to eat. No offense to the people at Kellogg's, but their recipe needs some serious updating.
I found this recipe from my go-to website, allrecipes.com. When I want to make something I've never tried before and I'm not quite sure how to go about it, this is the place I go to first. And I always, always find what I'm looking for. I found recipes for arepas (a Venezuelan corn cake that is stuffed with meat and served hot), churros (a Mexican doughnut that is made with a lot of egg, rolled in cinnamon sugar, and served warm; preferably with a cup of hot chocolate), dumplings, apple pie, and even fortune cookies. Yes, I get around in the kitchen; why do you ask? I just believe that there is nothing that we can't make, and the internet is a great resource to find out how, if you don't know. My mother in law, for some reason, thinks that this is awesome of me. But she hates to cook.
Here is the recipe for these guys... they take a lot of prep time up front, but it's totally worth it in the end.
I'm breaking the ingredients up into groups as they are combined and used differently.
1) 1 cup flour
3 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
Combine all of the above in a mixing bowl and set aside.
2) 3/4 cup milk. Put this in a microwave safe bowl and heat it up for 1 minute. Then add:
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla and whisk it. Then add:
Let this sit covered for 10 minutes. Then:
3) melt 8 tbsp of shortening or butter and add it to the milk mixuture. Stir in:
2 cups bran (I shred regular bran flakes for the bran and it works).
Let this sit covered for 10 more minutes. Then:
Take the flour mixture and stir in the bran/raisin/milk mixture. While mixing, add:
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp corn syrup
And mix til moistened. You can make giant muffins (6) or a dozen small ones. Make sure you grease the pans first!
Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 25-30 minutes. (20-25 minutes for the dozen smaller ones, 25-30 minutes for 6 huge ones). They are done when a toothpick comes out clean from the center. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then remove to baking rack and cool for an additional 30.