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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Ruby's Coffee Cake Muffins

Something yummy is baking here at Muse Cottage!

It is recipe time here on Ruby's Musings. This go around I have a sweet treat that though not sinless, isn't the worst for you either, and made into muffins, it helps with portion control! When I was formulating this recipe, based on a basic coffee cake recipe from the 1950's , I was having a hard time coming up with a good name for it, so hence the above title for them. These yummy coffee cake muffins have the sweet juice of oranges, chunks of semi sweet chocolate, and crushed bits of candied cinnamon almonds. It is a very dense, loaf or coffee cake texture, but it is still moist. It has a slight bit of chew from the almonds and then the creamy texture of the chocolate bits. The recipe does include shortening, but could be switched out for coconut oil, the solid variety, or even for a lighter version, sour cream...even fat free. The orange juice could be tangerine, but really any other would not go as well. The chocolate is optional, or could be substituted with dark, milk or even white varieties. The candied almonds could be substituted for any nut candied or not... I prefer candied/spiced nuts as it adds a nice flavor profile. I bought most of my ingredients, all but the flour which is King Arthur Flour, and my spices which I buy online through a spice company, at Trader Joes, but you can of course shop at your local market. This could be made into a loaf OR in an 8x8 cake pan, or a round one if that is what you have, and of course that will make baking times change, as muffins that are medium size, and make a dozen, I baked them for 25 minutes. If you made them smaller, you can of course get more and bake them for less. I chose muffins for portion control. 

Let's talk toppings. I chose to not use any, but I could see this with holes poked into them and some kind of orange glaze soaking them through, or a orange flavored powdered sugar and orange juice glaze drizzled on top. Perhaps you would like a cream cheese and chopped nut frosting on them, perhaps you want to top them with a crumble or raw sugar...all would be very tasty and kick them up a notch. So let's get onto the recipe.....

What you need...
 2 cups of sifted flour 
1/2 tsp of baking soda
*1/4 tspnutmeg
*1/4 tsp allspice
*1/4 tsp cinnamon 
( *I used a all purpose baking spice )
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup shortening 
1 cup brown sugar packed lightly
2 eggs, room temp...beaten until thick
1  tbsp grated orange rind..less if dried 
3/4 cup orange juice...with pulp 
1/2 cup chocolate chips or chunks* 
1/2 cup crushed candied nuts*
( you can add up to 3/4 cup without issue if you like, or use less if you like) 

What you need to do....

Sift flour, baking soda, spices and salt together and set aside. 
cream shortening and sugar until creamy.
If you have not already beat eggs until thick and then add to shortening mixture.
And in orange rind and mix to blend. 
Add sifted ingredients and orange juice alternately, beating thoroughly after each addition.
Add nuts and chocolate and blend once again until incorporated.  

Pour into either greased or lined cupcake pan or into a greased pan of choice at 350 degrees...
bake cupcakes for 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean , if baking in a cake pan it can bake upwards of 50 minutes... adjust accordingly for your oven 

Don's skip the sifting, it is important. 

Ok you caught me, I bought a selfie stick so I can take my own photos.

Make sure you add your sifted ingredients a bit at a time.....
....with juice alternately .

I used my grinder to help crush the almonds, but you could do so in a baggie and a hammer or if a soft nut with a knife. 

Using a scoop helps to assure you get even amounts in the muffin cups. 

Cool thoroughly on a baking rack

Store in an air tight container. 

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  1. Thoroughly scrumptious looking muffins! There were two "everyday" (aka, not birthday, holiday, etc) that featured heavily in my childhood. One was a crumble top coffee cake, the other a banana cake with a brown sugar and coconut topping that you placed under the broiler to caramelize it (sublime!). As such, anytime I see something pertaining to coffee cake, I'm whisked back to my youth. :)

    Many hugs & heartfelt thanks for your lovely blog comments today,
    ♥ Jessica

    1. My favorite memories surround food too...I think that's a similar situation for many. You are so welcome, and thank you!

  2. I adore your hair here. Your muffins look fab too


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