Warm from the oven, this recipe for maple-sweetened and cinnamon-spiced apple muffins makes for a hearty fall breakfast.
Last night I went out in the afternoon with a bowl and picked all the ripe tomatoes off the vines. Then I carefully wrapped the plants and the green orbs in old sheets, securing them in place with clamps. Then the wind howled all night, whipping the sheets back and forth against the plants, but protecting them from the icy mix that fell while we slept.
Summer is a thing of the past, and the fallen leaves that collect in the gutters and are whipped to and fro in the yard are the new normal. At the market the apples are out, filling the vendor tables in mass numbers and in an array of colors. There are Ginger Golds, kissed by the sun, Honeycrisp with their shiny red skins, and dark, ruby red Cortlands.
My kids all gather around the tables, snitching samples and pointing at the overflowing baskets, always choosing the largest one. Their eyes are never bigger than their heads, though; no matter how many apples I buy, they seem to devour them all by the midweek.
If I can hide a few away, though, I’ll chop the last two into tiny bites and mix them into the muffins for Saturday morning. Their sweet, juicy bits explode as you bite in, pockets of fruit, the final farewell of fall before the snow sets in.
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup milk
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- ⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom, optional
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup diced apple
- In a large bowl, measure out 1¾ cups of rolled oats. Add the milk and stir to coat. Allow to rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
- To the soaked oats, stir in the butter, ⅓ cup maple syrup, egg, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, stir together 1 cup flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring just until mixed.
- Add in the apples, and stir to combine. Fill muffin cups ⅔ full. Mix together the remaining oats, maple syrup, and flour. Sprinkle the mix over the top of the muffins.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until muffins are golden brown on top and the centers are set. Cool slightly before serving.
|Shaina Olmanson is the freelance writer, photographer, and home cook behind Food for My Family. Cooking daily with and for her four kids and husband, Ole, drives her desire to inspire other families to do the same. Shaina is also the author of Desserts in Jars and contributes regularly to a variety of online sites and traditional print magazines.|