I don’t like it when people say that baking is a science, because that implies rigid rules and little room for error. I almost never follow recipes down to the exact teaspoon, and heck, sometimes I accidentally leave out an ingredient altogether. With the exception of maybe Swiss Meringue Buttercream or French macaroons (what is it about the European sweets?!), I’ve found that most baked goods are forgiving and open to variations.
Which is not to say that I don’t still get nervous when I bake from several different recipes mashed together, because I can’t stand wasting ingredients – there’s nothing more disheartening than having to throw out a whole batch of frosting or wasting eggs on whites that don’t whip. (Yes, I speak from experience…)
I wasn’t sure how the texture would turn out in these because I used proportions from two different pumpkin muffin recipes as well as a pumpkin cupcake recipe, and left out spices I didn’t have on hand. I think I worried for nothing though, because the muffins turned out moist, fragrant, and just slightly sweet. If you decrease the flour. increase the sugar and oil, and frost with a cream cheese icing, these would make great cupcakes! I brought them in for ‘Chai Day Friday’ in my Russian class, where we make tea and people take turns bringing in food every week.
On a completely different note, guess what I got to use for the first time when I made these?
After school and before the homecoming football game a few weeks ago, my friends and I went to a nearby shopping center for dinner, and then we did a little shopping. Among my purchases were: the shoes I wore to the homecoming dance, fuzzy socks, and…drumroll please… these cuties:
How could I not buy mini spatulas with pigs on them?! They were especially useful for filling the muffin cups – I use an ice cream scoop to portion them evenly, and then used the mini spatula to scrape out the batter. They’re my new favorite kitchen tools of the moment! 🙂
Recipe: Pumpkin Muffins
- 2 1/2 C flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cloves
- 4 eggs
- 2 C pumpkin puree
- 1/2 C granulated sugar
- 1/2 C light brown sugar
- 1 1/4 C oil
- Preheat to 350 F. Line muffin tins with paper liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and the spices. In a large bowl, blend the eggs, pumpkin puree, sugars, and oil.
- Add the dry ingredients to the large bowl and mix on medium speed until smooth and uniform, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Fill each liner about 3/4 full with batter and wipe off any drips on the tins. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Number of servings (yield): 24-26 muffins