Hazelnut Streusel Apple Muffins

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I’m learning a lot. Big things and little things.

Big things like what it means to be the mother of an amazing, wailing, little nugget of baby-boy cuteness, while also being a wife and partner.

Little things like how to get in that daily shower, work with this new dang camera, and fit in making a batch of these muffins complete with a photo (or two) and blog post.

So, while I balance my babe on one arm and type with the other, let me tell you about these muffins. They are the first thing I’ve baked since before Casper was born and they are pretty damn good. The recipe is an adaptation of Joy’s Brown Butter Blueberry Muffins with tart apples in place of the berries, a bit of hazelnut in the streusel, and plenty of cinnamon for some autumnal warmth. Even though this summer has been really good to me–baby! house! beautiful blue sky days!–I’m always ready for fall with it’s crisp air, fallen leaves, and cozy indoor days. These muffins are perfect for the transitioning season–not too long of a bake time, so you don’t heat up your kitchen too much, but just enough warmth and carb-y goodness to make things cozy. WIN.

[recipe]

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Hazelnut Streusel Apple Muffins

Makes about 18 muffins.

If you don’t have, or want to use, flax and wheat germ reduce the milk to 1/3 cup.

Streusel:

3 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup hazelnuts, chopped

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Muffin Batter:

8 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 cup milk

1 egg, plus 1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons ground flax seeds

2 tablespoons wheat germ

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

2 cups diced granny smith apples (from about 2 peeled and cored apples)

Preheat the oven to 350º F and line two muffin tins with 16 paper liners (I do 12 in one tin, and 6 in the center of the other).

In a bowl pinch the butter into the flour, sugar, cinnamon, and chopped hazelnuts to combine. Set aside.

In a skillet or saucepan melt the butter and heat over medium until the butter becomes foamy, the butter separates, and the solids become brown and smell fragrant like toffee. Remove from the heat and pour into a dish to cool. Set aside.

In a measuring cup whisk the milk, egg + yolk, and vanilla until well combined.

In a mixing bowl whisk together the flour, flax, wheat germ, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon.  In a separate bowl toss the chopped apples with the remaining cinnamon.

 

Pour the milk and egg mixture into the mixing bowl of the flour mixture and fold until just combined. Fold in the apples. Divide the muffin batter between the lined muffin cups, filling about 3/4 full, and top each muffin with streusel. Bake the muffins in the center of the oven for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool before serving. [/recipe]

 

 

 

 

 

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

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Hey, there! While I am away snuggling this brand new babe and trying to navigate parenthood (aka keep him alive) I’ve asked a few friendly bloggers to share a recipe with you. Next up is Sarah from the ever-fantastic The Sugar Hit! Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

I like big BUNDTS, and I cannot lie. Sorry, that joke just never gets old. Hello! I’m Sarah, from The Sugar Hit, here to guest post while Cindy miraculously produces and becomes accustomed to caring for a human child. I know – it’s nothing short of incredible.

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

I tried to think what I might bring along to meet with Cindy after she gets her new bebe home/just before she heads off to bring it into the world, if we didn’t live a few oceans away from each other. I settled on this Jam Donut Bundt Cake. There are so many reasons why, let me run through them for you.

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

Firstly, it’s delicious. Secondly, it actually keeps really well, so it’s perfect if you want to give your new mom-friend a lil’ something to snack on over the coming days. Thirdliciously, it’s brushed with butter and coated with cinnamon sugar, which is a good reason to do just about anything in my opinion. And fourthly, it’s so versatile; have it with coffee, have it for breakfast, or nuke it in the microwave for a few seconds and have it with a scoop of ice cream (no really, do that).

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

The other cool thing about this recipe is that it’s so simple – everything comes together in one bowl, and the jam comes straight out of a jar. So this is just the kind of recipe that would be nice to deliver hand written along with the cake itself, because it’s pretty perfect mom-material. So, Miss Cindy, consider this my virtual hand written recipe for you. And congratulations in advance, Mama!

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

[recipe]

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JAM DONUT CAKE!

For the cake:

2 + 2/3 cups (400g) all-purpose flour

2 + ½ tsp baking powder

1 cup (225g) superfine sugar

1 + ½ sticks (175g) butter, melted

1 cup (250ml) milk

2 whole eggs

1 tsp grated nutmeg

½ cup (125ml) blackberry jam

For the coating (optional):

½ cup superfine sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1 stick of butter, melted.

  1. Grease a 9 inch (23cm) bundt tin well, and preheat your oven to 350F (180C).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and sugar until well combined.
  3. In a separate jug, stir together the melted butter, milk, eggs and nutmeg.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir everything together with a wooden spoon until well combined.
  5. Pour half of the batter into the bundt tin, and spread the batter up the sides of the tin with the back of a spoon. Don’t worry too much about this step – basically you just want to make sure the jam is encased in the batter, and doesn’t leak out.
  6. Dollop the jam on top of the batter, forming a ring of jam without touching the edges of the tin, and then dollop over the rest of the cake batter, and smooth it out gently, so that all the jam is covered.
  7. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean (don’t poke it into the jam).  Leave to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes, and then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool further.
  8. When you’re ready to serve the cake, brush is with the melted butter, and then stir together the sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle the cake liberally with it, pressing gently if necessary to make it adhere. Serve, warm, cold, hot, with tea, coffee or with ice cream! [/recipe]

Pumpkin Cinnamon Bun Ice Cream

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So, remember when I was having a dilemma about whether or not to keep adding text to my lead photo? Well, I’ve decided, with your feedback, to just do whatever the heck I wanna do. I think it will work out nicely and now I don’t have any more imaginary stress about it. So, THANKS. You are all the best…so, I made you ice cream!

YAY!

This ice cream is so dang good, you guys. I mean, it has all the flavors of a pumpkin cinnamon roll, including a gooey cinnamon caramel swirl AND a cream cheese icing swirl. I mean, we all know cream cheese icing never hurt a cinnamon bun, amiright? The ice cream is laced with pumpkin puree and a punch of spices making it taste like all the things we love about autumn, plus those swirls. The swirls aren’t totally necessary, but they really make this ice cream something else…plus they make for pretty scoops and I’m all about cute food.

And, can we talk about how it’s October and I’ve been wearing witchy colors on my nails EVERYDAY, that have apparently transferred into the styling here. I love that black flatware and have had it almost since the beginning of this blog–meaning it’s older than my 3-year-old niece.  I can’t always make it work the rest of the year…so just another reason to L-O-V-E fall. Okay, I’m done. Happy Friday, get yo’ pumpkin ice cream on!

[recipe]

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Pumpkin Cinnamon Bun Ice Cream

Adapted from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home

It is best to make the cinnamon caramel in advance so it can cool to room temperature before layering with the ice cream. You will probably have a little extra caramel, so just store it in a lidded jar in the refrigerator for 1 week…and pour it over this ice cream OR use it to dip apples into.

3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened

3/4 cup plain pumpkin puree (not pie filling)

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch

2 cups whole milk

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 1/4 cup heavy cream

2/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons corn syrup

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

In a large bowl whisk the softened cream cheese until creamy, stir in the maple and pumpkin. In another small bowl whisk together the cornstarch with a few tablespoons of the milk. Set both aside.  Prepare an ice bath in a clean sink or large bowl.

In a saucepan heat the remaining milk, sea salt, cream, sugar, corn syrup, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Bring to a simmer and quickly whisk in the cornstarch mixture until well combined. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook while stirring for 3-4 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat and pour the mixture into the bowl containing the cream cheese and pumpkin mixture. Whisk to combine completely. Pour the mixture into a gallon size freezer bag, seal, and dunk into the ice bath. Let it sit in the ice bath until cool.  Process the ice cream base in a ice cream maker according to manufacturers instructions. Layer the ice cream into a container with the cooled cinnamon caramel and cream cheese—try to get at least three layers for maximum swirled goodness.

For the Cinnamon Caramel Sauce:

1/2 cup sugar

3 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons corn syrup

1/8-1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 teaspoons cinnamon

In a saucepan heat the sugar, water, butter, and corn syrup together until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and cook until the mixture becomes deep golden brown and caramelized. Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the salt and heavy cream until smooth and glossy. The caramel will bubble furiously at this point, so be careful! Stir in the cinnamon and pour into a heatproof container to cool.

For the Cream Cheese Swirl:

6 ounces cream cheese, softened

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar

In a bowl, combine all the ingredients and beat with a hand mixer until combined and smooth. [/recipe]