Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Cure For Rainy Days and Mondays

Rainy days and Mondays always get you down, right? Well, not anymore, thanks to these delicious Martha Stewart muffins chosen by Anuradha at Baker Street for this weeks Muffin Monday roundup.

I was honored when she asked if I would be interested in participating, since so many creative and talented bakers are, and have been, contributors.  What a great way to promote fellowship, sharing, and learning among bakers and foodies alike. 

After receiving my email and recipe, my first thought was how adaptable this could be to different flavors and presentations. I love the sour cream for it's contribution of tang and moisture; And streusel topping, yum!, I love it on so many baked goods.

Since everybody loves springy muffin tops, unless they're on the beach hanging out of too small bikini's, and streusel is my favorite, I scaled my muffins kind of heavy, gambling on a great muffin top at the risk of a volcanic muffin eruption in the oven.  It turned out that I was slightly heavy, but no disasters!

I often play with recipes and put my own touch on them, but when making them for the first time, I usually tow the line just to have a baseline of what the original product was meant to be. However, I did vary from the presentation a little just to show the versatility of this type of recipe.  Instead of a dozen jumbo muffins, I used various 'bake and serve' containers from one of my favorite companies, NovaCart.  These are ovenable containers in a variety of shapes and  sizes that offer a more upscale alternative to foil pans.

The only straying from the original recipe was when I used the 4 x 4 square container. Here, I added some fresh blueberries to the top and finished with a simple 'roll icing' to create a cute little personal size coffee cake.

The beauty of good muffin recipes like this is that you can add flavors, fruits, etc. while changing the presentation, and excite your friends and neighbors with your gourmet baking prowess! Of course, my neighbors get excited when they beat the vultures to a fresh road kill, and think gourmet eating is having ketchup with their chicken nuggets.

Quick Release, free standing muffin cups. Cool, huh?

The final result? An easy, yummy, versatile muffin sure to keep rainy days and Mondays from ever getting you down again. And, muffin tops you'll be proud to show your spouse!

Be sure to visit Baker Street for links to other great entries to Monday Muffin's. :-)

For The Muffins
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for greasing
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for greasing
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sour cream
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Confectioners' sugar (optional)

For The Streusel Topping
1 cup packed dark-brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- For the streusel topping: In a medium bowl, stir together brown sugar, flour, and salt. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut in butter until mixture resembles large coarse crumbs; refrigerate until ready to use.
- For the Muffins: Butter and flour a jumbo 12-cup muffin tin (or two 6-cup muffin tins). In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and baking soda; set aside.
- On medium speed, beat together butter, sour cream, granulated sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well combined. With mixer on low, beat flour mixture into butter mixture.
- Divide half the batter among prepared muffin cups. Top with half the streusel mixture, then remaining batter, and top with streusel.
- Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Dust with confectioners' sugar, if desired.

Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week.


  1. I NEED those pans, which means the website is already open! Love this recipe and your adaptation to making it a smaller version of coffee cake. My only request? Jar streusel topping and sell by the jar! I could munch on that for days!

  2. Gorgeous Alan! Thank you for being a part of Muffin Monday. Hope you'll continue to join us week on week and spread the muffin love.

    Where did you get those pans from?!

  3. Alan, I cannot agree more! So versatile! I cannot wait to try other variations. Next stop, banana!

    So happy to bake with you this week!

  4. Love the square coffee cake with blueberries :) this was a hectic week due to Father's day festivities and I had no time to get "creative" with the recipe. Hope u bake with us again next Monday :)

  5. i love how the muffins pop out of the pan - those are the most alluring muffins at the coffee shops - big muffin tops with tons of streusel!

  6. Hey Alan. that streusel marble looks so good. Good job and happy to see all my friends doing this with An. Great lookin; muffin!! :)

  7. I love those pans, Alan! I need to get my hands on some of those. The square coffee cake with blueberries looks amazing. It was fun baking "together" this week!

  8. Hi there! Im glad to do this with you and to know more about your kitchen adventures.
    WHere did you get those pans? I love the variations too!

  9. Alan, what a great post ! And all those muffins including the baking pan look adorable! Thanks for sharing the tip on the baking pans. Will surely look into it. It was fun baking alongside with you and the rest!

  10. Hello there, my first time baking with the Muffin Monday baking group. I love those bake-and-serve pans but never knew they came in muffin size, too. I love this recipe as well and will be sure to play around with the recipe. Looking forward to baking more muffins with you.

  11. OMG! Your muffins look extraordinarily good!!!

  12. Love the cake size version. That's definitely my kinda eats!!

  13. Not only do you demonstrate the versatility of a muffin recipe, but the variety of bake and share pans. They go hand in hand very well. Love it!

  14. Hello, fellow Southerner! I am fully convinced the world needs more muffins! Yours look divine and I love your pans. I'm going in add you to my blogroll. I will be back....if I'm invited, of course!

  15. Now that I've found out about Muffin Mondays my mondays will never be blah again :) I look forward to making future muffins with you and the rest of the group!

  16. You had better hope your chicken-nugget-eating neighbours aren't internet savvy, young man ;)

    Great post and agree with Stay At Home Chef... what's not to love about Mondays now that they are all about Muffins? This is a great service Anuradha is doing for the world! Well done on snagging the invite!

    Your streusel looks wonderful. If your jarring it(as per Nelly's request), sign me up for a shipment, please and thanks!

  17. love the streusel topping ! the muffins look delicious alan :)

  18. The muffins with the streusel topping look delightful! Have to bake it this weekend.

  19. I love muffins with streusel topping! Your variation with the blueberries is such a great idea too! Cool "bake and serve" containers--I will have to check those out....

  20. I'm a week late on these muffins, but yum! They look good...especially that topping. I'll take a big bowl of that, please!


Thanks for visiting. I appreciate your comments and suggestions. :-)