Monday, October 6, 2008


Janice Christofferson, Eagle River, Wisconsin, submitted her original recipe for Jumbo Pumpkin Pecan Muffins to Taste of Home Magazine and had it printed in their October/November 2008 issue. I thought the crunchy topping was a neat idea and decided to try these. I did make some changes. I incorporated some whole wheat flour in the mix, used bread flour for the remainder, subbed some Stevia for part of the sugar, added raisins and modified the baking temperatures slightly. Oh, yes, and I made standard-size muffins. The muffins are very tender and moist, and the topping is nice, but I'd like a bit more spice. They're not terribly sweet, which is ok by me. I like them a lot, it's just that I like my pumpkin muffins a little spicier. If I make them again, I'll double the spice and cut the buttermilk in half. Check out my recipe for Pumpkin Spice Rum Raisin Muffins also.

Jumbo Pumpkin Pecan Muffins, Adapted Half Recipe
Rating: 8 out of 10
1 Tbsp. melted butter
3 Tbsp. finely chopped pecans
3 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 Tbsp. whole wheat flour

Stir topping ingredients together in a small bowl; set aside.

1/4 cup boiling water
1/2 cup raisins
1-1/4 cups flour (I used 3/4 cup whole wheat + 1/2 cup bread flour, lightly spooned)
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (I would increase this to 2 tsp.)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt (I use sea salt, always, because it has minerals)
1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1 large egg
1/2 cup pumpkin, fresh or canned
1/2 cup buttermilk (I used low-fat, and I would decrease to 1/4 cup)
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

In a small bowl or measuring cup, add the raisins to the boiling water and let steep for at least 15 minutes, or till raisins are plumped. Drain raisins, discarding liquid. Pat dry on paper towels.

Preheat oven to 450F. Spray a 6-cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt till well combined. Stir in the walnuts and the drained raisins, coating them well with the flour mixture.

In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, pumpkin, buttermilk, oil and vanilla till smooth and well combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients all at once and stir with a spatula, gently and quickly, mixing only till just barely combined. A few lumps are ok. Don't overmix or you'll get tough muffins.

Scoop about 1/4 cup batter into each muffin well and sprinkle topping evenly over the muffins, ppressing in just a bit so that it sticks.

Place in oven and immediately reduce heat to 375F. Bake about 17 minutes, or till a toothpick inserted in center returns almost clean. Cool in pan about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling completely. Yield: 6 standard sized muffins.

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