A couple of weeks ago a relative of mine was leaving for Florida for the winter and was cleaning out their fridge for the winter and found a bag of cranberries, and some how these cranberries ended up in my freezer. I was thinking I would make home-made cranberry sauce for our Annual Turkey Dinner, but instead I made muffins.
You see I am from Massachusetts where I think the most cranberries are produced annually, at Ocean Spray in Plymouth, MA. You must understand that as a kid in school one field trip a year in Elementary School is to the Mayflower ship, Plymouth Rock, and the Ocean Spray factory. Cranberries are a very cool fruit, not only how they grow but especially how they are harvested by flooding the bogs and skimming the surface to harvest all the little berries. Berries that pack almost as much flavor in them as Pom berries from Pomegranates.
Cranberries are not always the first fruit I go to when I am making muffins. I usually think of bananas or apples, but it is fall in New England and cranberries are the in fruit now. The funny thing about cranberries, much like Toll House Chocolate Chips, there is a recipe for Cranberry Nut Bread on the package, that was the starting point to these muffins.
This is what I did ...
2 cups of flour
1 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3/4 cup of orange juice
2 cups of cranberries
2 teaspoons of sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin pan by lining the muffin cups.
Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the wet ingredients and mix till combined. If you are using a mixer at this point you are finished with the "power tool." Gently fold in the cranberries, being careful not to burst any.
Put approximately 1/4 of a cup of batter in each muffin cup and sprinkle with sugar over top.
Bake for 25 minutes or until when toothpick inserted come out clean.
These muffins we found to be tart more than sweet, which is a welcoming change to the norm. You can of course always add 1 tablespoon of orange zest to punch up the orange flavor, or you could add some crushed walnuts.
Welcome Autumn in New England!!!