Saturday, July 25, 2009

Chocolate-Cherry Crumb Cake Muffins

Hey you guys! How have you been?


O, there's no one left? That's too bad. I guess I'll just have to eat these muffins all by myself. I can't say I mind. They're pretty ridiculously scrumptious. Not too sweet, but just decadent enough to straddle the line between a tame desert and a generous breakfast.

I recently decided that muffins are my favorite thing to bake. They're super quick, and they're in individual portions, which is perfect for taking to work, or my running group, or just to prevent myself from eating an obscene amount in one sitting.

They're also extremely versatile. My "regular" muffins lately have been a blueberry bran muffin. I make half a batch every week and have them for breakfast. Those ones are a tad healthier, but I'll tell you about them later. You can't come back from such a long absence with a bran muffin. If I did that, the one soul out there still reading would head for the exit.

No you need a peace offering, which obviously means chocolate. Then some fresh fruit, since summer is in full force. And how about a little nutty, brown sugar topping, just for good measure.

Cherry season is almost over, so go and make these soon! Or it will be another 12 months....

Chocolate-Cherry Crumb Cake Muffins
Makes 12

You don't have to have a cherry pitter to make these. I don't. Just carefully use a paring knife. It will take about 5 to 10 minutes to de-pit and quarter a cup. Also, I grind my almonds in food process, until they're somewhere between oatmeal and flour in consistency. Feel free to use a rougher chop, and bigger pieces, if you prefer.

2 cups all purpose flour (I used cake flour when I was out of AP)*
1/3 cup sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 egg
3 tbs. melted butter or oil
1 cup milk (2% works well)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup quartered cherries
1/3 cup chocolate chips

Crumb Topping
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tbs. melted butter
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup ground almonds (rough chopped, if you prefer)

-Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare a 12 cup muffin tin with liners or cooking spray.
-In a large mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
-In a smaller bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter, and vanilla.
-Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gentle fold together. The batter does not have to be smooth, so mix only until combined.
-Stir in the cherries and the chocolate chips.
-Combine the crumb topping ingredients in a small bowl.
-Divide the batter in the muffin cups, sprinkle the tops with the crumb topping.
-Bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire wrack.

*Remember that engagement cake I made monttttths ago? I was a little overzealous buying cake flour for that, and since I bake like one cake a year, I still have several boxes left.

In case you want to know, although you might not, I calculated the total calories for the ingredients, and I came up with about 230 calories per muffin. This is not scientific by any means, but it's a rough estimate. Fat? Protein? Fiber? I don't have that much time on my hands. I'm sorry.


The Single Gal said...

Where the hell have you been??

Ok, it doesn't matter - you're forgiven... glad you're back :)

Anonymous said...

YUM! I LOOOOOOVE muffins and these look fabulous! I love the flavor combo!

Taylor Robinson said...

SEE--people DO notice when you're gone. :-)

Emily said...

I almost didn't recognize your blog with a new post! So glad to see you back!

muddywaters said...

I need to surprise my wife with these. I actually have some frozen cherries I need to use. I'll let you know if I make them.

Tonight we take off for Colorado, but I plan on baking them when I return. I'm always a cooking machine when I return from vacation.

muddywaters said...

I made these Wednesday, and the family loved them. My daughter was surprised because normally my wife is the muffin baker. I don't think she quite believed that daddy baked muffins.

You're right. These aren't too sweet. Often people get carried away with the sugar in their muffins.