Pumpkin spice muffins

It only took five years, but I’m finally excited about autumn.

I can’t believe that it’s been five years since I moved here from Florida. That first fall I remember being enchanted by the foliage, and yet dreading the impending winter. I was cold all the time. Those first few weeks, I joined friends at local bars and watched the Red Sox make their way to a World Series, was surprised at how people got so into Halloween, and wondered how anyone could start their day with oatmeal. My, how things have changed.

This past summer was amazing. They always are. But when that first whisper of autumn came in September, I was sort of excited at the prospect of hunkering down in the kitchen baking muffins and drinking tea.

And that’s largely what I’ve done. Aside from running, working, planning a bathroom update and a bit of travel. This recipe was originally a quick-bread that Shelby over at Lady Gouda blogged about last year. Moist and not too sweet, I loved it just the way it was. But I’ve been getting up at 5:30 a.m. four mornings a week to work out, and I needed a more portable breakfast, so I made it into muffins. As I invariably do with recipes, I also tweaked it over time, adding more spices, and raisins, and nuts until it became something different enough for me to want to document, mainly so I can remember how to make it next fall.

I love this recipe because it comes together so easily, and makes a treat that captures the essence of fall. While suitable for breakfast, I’d argue that the loaf could serve just as well for dessert. It’s that good. The loaf is moister, but the muffins are easier for me to handle on these dark fall mornings. No knife required.

Pumpkin Spice Muffins
(adapted from Lady Gouda)

½ cup vegetable oil
¾ cup unsweetened apple sauce
2 cups  sugar
4 large eggs
one 15-ounce can pumpkin
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/3 cups white flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon (I like Vietnamese)
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raisins
½ cup pepitas
Heat oven to 350, and lightly grease muffin tin or loaf pans. Toast pepitas on a baking sheet while you assemble the batter. They may pop and crackle, just keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.
In a large bowl, combine oil, apple sauce, sugar, eggs, and pumpkin. Mix well and set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl combine the flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices. Mix well, and then add the dry ingredients to the wet ones. Stir until just combined, then add raisins and walnuts. Pour batter into muffin tins/ loaf pans and top with pepitas. Bake about 20 minutes for muffins, and 45 minutes for loaves. Makes 24 muffins or two loaves.

2 thoughts on “Pumpkin spice muffins

  1. Pingback: Buttermilk ice cream « The Musing Bouche

  2. Pingback: Welch-Dickey loop | The Musing Bouche

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