Muffins are one of those quick breads that you have to be careful not to over beat. This was a lesson I was taught by my mother and later when I was at the CIA, the Chef made a point to show what happens when you do over mix and the strands of protein in the flour break down--you pretty much get soup! I find if I beat the wet ingredients, then remove the bowl from the mixer's stand and stir in the dry ingredients, I can't go wrong.
Recipes for muffins showed up as early as the 19th century here in America. It's definitely a popular treat for the morning with Blueberry, Banana, and Pumpkin topping the charts at most bakeries. I know when I'm busy, a muffin is a quick way to get a start to my day.
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 up vegetable oil
1 cup granulated sugar
2 T honey
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 apple, peeled and grated (you should have about 1 cup grated apple)
1 cup chopped dried dates
3/4 cup fresh orange juice
3 Cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 400F-degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with papers or spray with a non-stick baking spray.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment. Cream the butter, oil, sugar and honey together until light. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and mix once more. Remove bowl from the stand--the mixture should be light and fluffy.
Add the dry ingredients, grated apple, dates and orange juice and fold in, using a spatula.
Scoop batter into the prepared muffin pan, if desired, add a dehydrated apple slice to the top of the muffin.
Bake for 5 minutes in the 400-degree oven, then lower the heat to 350F-degrees and bake an additional 18 to 20 minutes until golden brown and a skewer in the center comes out cleanly.
Peel back the paper and enjoy a luscious muffin with your favorite morning beverage.
Moist and flavorful--these muffins were a hit this morning. Enjoy!