Here's the scene in my kitchen Wednesday morning as my girls and I waited out the two-hour school delay.
"Should I make some muffins for breakfast?" I asked.
"Yes," the girls said.
"What kind?" I wondered.
"Pear," said my younger one, picking up a ripened pear on the counter. And then they went off to play.
OK. Actually, that sounded kind of good. I hadn't made pear muffins before, but I figured they couldn't be far from apple muffins that I've made more than a handful of times. I Googled pear muffins and quickly turned up a recipe on TheKitchn.com, a website that I often return to for easy and delicious recipes. I haven't gone wrong with anything that I've tried.
These looked easy enough. And bonus: I had nearly everything I needed in my kitchen, minus the whole wheat flour, which I ran out of two days ago, and the unsalted butter, which was frozen in the freezer. So I substituted salted butter and all-purpose flour for the whole wheat version.
They, of course, still tasted delicious, according to my kids; my husband, who took a couple extra for his lunch; and my neighbor, who enjoyed a couple too. I was happy to give them away. Otherwise, I would have eaten them all!
Spiced Pear Muffins
Adapted from Kitchn.com
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, softened (I used salted)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour (or another cup of all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 to 2 1/2 cups pears, unpeeled and diced small. The Kitchn.com recipe says you'll need about two medium-sized pears to get enough. I got more than two cups of diced pear from the single medium-sized pear that I had. I used a Bartlett pear.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and prepare your muffin tin with non-stick spray or muffin cups. Get your mixer out and cream the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
In another bowl, add your flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt. Measure out your 1/2 cup of milk. Pour about a 1/3 of the flour mixture into the creamed butter and sugar and mix. Add about 1/3 of the milk. Alternate between the flour mixture and milk until it's all in the mixing bowl. You want to mix on a low speed and avoid over mixing.
Once it is all incorporated, fold in your diced pears with a spatula. Spoon into your muffin cups. Sprinkle with some cinnamon sugar if you'd like. (That's about 1/4 cup of sugar to 1 tablespoon of cinnamon). Turn the oven down to 400 degrees. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
This recipe makes about 12 muffins. I got 13 out of it.
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