Yes, I know today is Tuesday. And yes, I know this does NOT look like the Creme Brulee I was supposed to be making for TWD. I have to be honest, I am not the biggest fan of Creme Brulee so I decided to skip this weeks recipe. I still want to send a big THANK YOU to Mari of Mevrouw Cupcake for picking this weeks recipe!
My Grandparents came over the other weekend for dinner and brought with them a garbage bag full of apples. Freshly picked from the tree in their backyard. Growing up, my grandparents lived in a large house on the top of a hill in Fremont, CA. They had horses, dogs, cats, and a garden. They grew vegetables, and peaches, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries. My brother and I used to sneak into the garden whenever we were visiting and gorge ourselves on luscious berries. My grandmother was famous for her jams. I'm not really a jam person but I LOVED her jams! My absolute favorite, favorite, favorite, thing about my grandparents garden, however, were the fresh peaches. My grandparents would pick them by the bucket full, peel and slice them, and store them in the freezer. Whenever we came over the visit they would serve us vanilla ice cream with half thawed peaches. Yum, the peaches were sooo good! The memory is making my mouth water!
Anyway, enough reminiscing and back to the apples. My grandparents no longer live on the house on the hill. They moved to a house (still very large) in the city. But they still have a garden (although it's a much smaller one). When they showed up with all those apples I was so excited, I love apples! Okay I just love fruit. But then my excitement turned into horror. How am I ever going to eat all these apples? I know! I'll cook with them and create a little mini series on my blog about cooking with apples! Brilliant! So I searched and searched and searched and found some pretty yummy recipes. This is the first of the series: Apple Oatmeal Muffins.
This recipe is adapted from Dorie Greenspan's recipe for apple nut muffin cake in Baking: From My Home to Yours. I took the basic recipe and modified it and made muffins instead of cake.
The ingredients: Flour (I used self-rising flour because that is all I had but you can use all purpose flour with 1 tablespoon baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda), Old Fashioned oats, apple juice, low fat plain yogurt (Dorie's recipe calls for milk but the yogurt makes it Extra Extra moist!), cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, vanilla, an egg, unsalted butter, salt, brown sugar, white sugar, pure almond extract...
and of course apples! I used a lot of apples, five to be exact, I wanted my muffins to be really really appley (is that a word?)!
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and grease your muffin pan. In a large bowl, mix together 2 cups of flour, 1/2 cup white sugar, 1/2 teaspoon each of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup brown sugar, and 1 cup old fashioned oats. Set aside.
Take your stick of unsalted butter and melt in in the microwave, then set it aside for a few minutes and let it cool. In a medium bowl whisk together 1/2 cup of apple juice, 1/2 cup of lowfat plain yogurt, 1 large egg, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla, 1 teaspoon pure almond extract, and 1 stick of melted unsalted butter.
Add the the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and using a spatula, mix until everything is incorporated, less mixing is better than more.
Peel and finely dice your apples (I ended up with about two cups!) and fold into muffin mixture.
Spoon into greased muffin cups, don't be modest now, go ahead, put a heaping spoonful into each cup! Bake for about 20 minutes or so until a knife comes out clean. Be careful not to over bake, check frequently. They will be light in color, that's ok!
Enjoy straight out of the oven or to make them even more moist, freeze them and defrost in the microwave for 1 minute. They defrost really well and are great for breakfast in a hurry!