Sunday, February 19, 2012

Coffeecake Muffins

I've been keeping these from you.

I actually made them two weeks ago for my dad's birthday, but between the recipe contest I entered and Valentine's Day (the busiest day of the year at my job!), I haven't had a chance to share them until now.

I think I inherited my love of all things sweet from my dad. Growing up, my sister and I could always count on him to take us to 7-11 for a Slurpee and a candy bar or to bring us fresh-baked doughnuts from the Safeway bakery when he came home from working the graveyard shift. To this day, I know that I'll always find Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tarts and at least one variety of Oreos in his pantry.

Most of my early memories of baking also involve my dad. We had the Mrs. Field's chocolate chip cookie recipe taped to the inside of one of our cabinets, and at the time I thought it was a top secret recipe that my dad somehow managed to get his hands on. Each time he and I made those cookies together, he told me that we had to taste the dough after each step to make sure it tasted good.

Smart guy, if you ask me.

One thing my dad always had in the console of his car was a pack of those little Hostess coffee cakes, which is what inspired me to make these coffeecake muffins for his birthday.

I always expect a dramatic reaction when I make things like peanut butter chocolate chip peanut butter cup cookies or s'more brownies. But I've found that it's often the simple things that people love most. I dropped these muffins off at my parents' house on my dad's birthday, and when I met up with my family for dinner a few days later, they couldn't stop raving about them!

Make these muffins for someone you love. Who enjoys sweets as much as you do. Who has always been there for you. Whose opinion you trust in every situation. Someone who deserves a little treat to remind them of how much they're appreciated.

And make sure you taste the batter after each step.... just to be sure.

Coffeecake Muffins
Adapted from Baking Illustrated

1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened and cubed
1 & 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.

2. Whisk together the pecans, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, and salt.

3. Drop the cubes of butter evenly over the flour mixture, and whisk vigorously until the butter is evenly distributed and the butter pieces are about the size of oats. Measure out 1/2 cup of the butter-flour mixture and combine it with the brown sugar mixture to make the streusel. Measure out 3/4 cup of streusel to be used in the batter, and set the rest aside for the topping.

4. Add the baking powder and baking soda to the butter-flour mixture, and whisk to combine. Combine the sour cream, egg, and vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup. Add the sour cream mixture to the butter-flour mixture and stir just until combined. Add 3/4 cup streusel to the batter, and stir until it's evenly distributed.

5. Divide the batter evenly between the 12 muffin cups and sprinkle about one tablespoon of streusel on top of each muffin. Bake for about 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center muffin comes out with only a few crumbs attached, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Allow the muffins to cool in the tin for about two minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

If desired, top the muffins with a powdered sugar glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons water. Drizzle the glaze over each muffin in a zig-zag motion.

Makes about 12 muffins.

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1 comment:

  1. This really looks delicious. I'm definitely craving for a plate of that right now. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. This is definitely a must do recipe this weekend since I got my ISO 22000 Training.