Friday, December 23, 2016

Pear, Oat and Nut Muffins

This recipe is from Whole Grain Mornings, which I really love! These muffins were really great, too, and were very moist thanks to the pear. If you don’t have whole wheat pastry flour, you could just use 1 ½ cups of white whole wheat flour instead of both wheat flours in the recipe. Also note that I only used ½ cup nuts, chopped and sprinkled on top of the muffins, as I didn’t want nuts In the batter, so that’s what I wrote below. Hazelnuts would be ideal, but I didn’t have any, so I used walnuts, and I’d like pecans next time. Of course, you could omit the nuts entirely, and some bloggers have been adding chocolate chips to these muffins, although I really liked them just as they were.

¾ cup (75 g.) rolled oats
1 cup (120 g.) unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup (60 g.) whole wheat pastry flour
¾ tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. ground cardamom
½ tsp. ground nutmeg
¾ tsp. kosher salt
2 or 3 firm medium pears
2/3 cup (125 g.) natural cane sugar
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter or margarine
1 cup lactose-free buttermilk substitute (lactose-free milk with 1 Tbsp. lemon juice)
2 large eggs, beaten
1 ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
½ cup (60 g.) hazelnuts, toasted, cooled and coarsely chopped (see note above)

Preheat oven to 425 *F. Butter a standard 12-cup muffin tin or line it with papers.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the oats, flours, baking soda, baking powder, cardamom, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well and set aside.

Peel and core the pears and grate them on the large holes of a box grater. You should end up with about 1 cup (215 g.) of shredded pear. (I had a bit more than that with 1 ½ pears already.)

Put the sugar in a large bowl. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter (I did this in the microwave). Add the butter to the sugar and stir until well combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, eggs, vanilla, and shredded pear until you have what resembles a loose batter. Add the flour mixture and fold in gently, being careful not to overmix.

Fill muffin cups almost to the top with batter and sprinkle with the chopped hazelnuts. Put the muffins in the oven and immediately decrease the heat to 375 °F. Bake until the tops are golden brown and feel firm to the touch, even in the center, 25 t o27 minutes. (These muffins get golden brown a bit before they are ready, so keep that in mind when you check them.)

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