Cranberry Love Muffins

This recipe got away from me a little bit. With last week’s frenzy of cooking up all things bready, I forgot to insert my valentine’s recipe, the amazingly easy, cranberry muffin.

I asked Zara what we should call these (I don’t know why I don’t ask her to name all my recipes, she’s hilarious) she replied without hesitation, love muffins.

We made these to give to her teachers on valentine’s day. I wanted to give her teachers something they could munch on while all the kids were eating their 5 million lollipops and hitting each other with pencils. I also wanted something that was relatively healthy, had a nice red pop, but was still satisfyingly sweet.

I happened to have a bag of cranberries in the freezer (as when it is cranberry season I buy as many local and fresh cranberries as I can), it was my last bag, and I wanted to do something nice with it. As I may have mentioned before, we’ve also started this habit of baking something on Mondays (it ummm…didn’t happen on a Monday the week of valentine’s day, but in fact, Thursday. My bad) so that we all can eat it for breakfast during the week. Therefore my limitations are:

  1. My husband will eat it.
  2. Zara will eat it.
  3. It’s portable.
  4. If all else fails, my cat will eat it.

With that in mind I set off to create a muffin that we would all enjoy, that wasn’t reminiscent of something I’ve made before.

I always try to base a baking recipe on something tried and true as baking is more of an exact science and I’m still trying to…perfect it. I find Ina Garten is a fantastic go to for basics, and most of her recipes are really easy to build off of.

I used the base of her Cranberry Harvest Muffins Recipe and then took away some ingredients that I knew I didn’t have (or wouldn’t be liked/appreciated by my husband/kid) and added others.

This is what you’ll need;

3 cups flour

1 tbsp baking powder

1/2 tea baking soda

1/2 tea salt

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tea ground cardamom

1 1/4 cups milk (I used 2%)

2 large eggs

1/2 lb unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

2 cups chopped fresh cranberries (can be frozen)

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup white sugar

Preheat oven to 375 F

Line your muffin tin or spray with oil (since I was giving these as gifts I lined them with festive paper liners).

Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cardamom in a large bowl. Add milk, eggs and melted butter. Stir to incorporate completely (no lumps!). Add your sugars and mix well. Finally, fold in cranberries. Your batter should be dotted with lovely pops of crimson.

Spoon into muffin tin about 2/3 full. Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until tops are lightly brown and a tester comes out clean.


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