For inquiring minds, I like a balance of fluff and cakishness in mine and follow The Muffin Method. Feel free to adapt to your own preferences.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Filled Cupcakes with Streusel Topping (adapted from lemonsugar)
makes 20 (overstuffed and portly) or 24 moderate cupcakes
Beat together 200g full-fat cream cheese (i.e. a regular tub of Philly) with 140g of icing sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice to taste (I like quite a hit of tartness, to cut through all the cream and spice) until smooth and fluffyish. Cover and refrigerate.
Crumble together 80g plain flour; 70g demerara sugar; 70g unsalted butter chilled and diced; and 1 tsp each ground cinnamon and nutmeg. I do this in a food processor because I tend to laziness and it tends to clumpiness, but you can of course rub everything together by hand. Refrigerate if necessary.
Preheat oven to 180ºC.
Beat together wet ingredients: 4 eggs, 400g caster sugar, 295ml vegetable oil and 1 can of pumpkin puree (425g) until smooth. Bring up to room temperature.
In a separate bowl, whisk dry ingredients together: 375g plain flour, 1tsp each ground cinnamon and nutmeg, 1/2 tsp salt and 2 tsp baking powder.
Check to see if your oven's ready and get everything together:
Add wet ingredients to dry and fold in until just combined (as with all muffins, do not overmix or they'll turn out all rubbery and sad D: I stick to under a dozen stirs.)
Fill each muffin case 1/3 full of batter, add a teaspoon of cold filling, then pour over more batter to fill the cup about to about 3/4 full.
|my rather overfilled muffins -- this is the 2nd tray, so I ended up with 20 vs 24.|
Allow to cool before eating so that the filling can set and get all unctuously cheescakey, unless you like primordially oozy filling (hey, I'm not judging....)
Matcha Adzuki Muffins
makes 12A basic fluffy muffin with interest from a classic combination of Japanese green tea (matcha) and sweetened adzuki paste.
You can be virtuous and make your own by soaking dried adzuki beans overnight and then boiling for a few hours until soft before adding sugar....or buy the perfectly nice canned stuff [check the ingredients list -- it should ideally just contain adzuki beans, sugar and maybe one preservative]. Mashing is optional and I play it by ear -- sometimes a silky sieved cream is just what I want, especially in a topping or for swirling, and sometimes I like the texture of the tinned version as is, half silky smooth, half the beans left whole.
Preheat oven to 200ºC.
Beat together wet ingredients until very smooth: 2 large eggs, 85g caster sugar, 100ml vegetable oil, 240ml milk. Bring to room temperature.
In separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients: 300g plain flour, 3 tsp baking powder, 1-3 Tbsp matcha powder (to taste), 1/2 tsp salt.
Dump wet ingredients into dry and mix roughly; a few lumps are fine.
Fill muffin cups to 1/3 with batter; add 1 tsp of sweetened adzuki bean paste (here it's straight out of the tin); add more batter to fill cups to 3/4.
Bake for 30 minutes until well risen and toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.
|sorry, all my pics came out fuzzy -- low blood sugar no doubt :P|
This recipe doesn't use up a whole tin of adzuki bean paste, so just clingfilm over your leftovers and put it in the fridge where it should keep for a few days. I like spreading some on a warm brioche for breakfast, spooning over ice cream (especially matcha ice cream, or if wanting to go all trad, grilling up a Japanese rice cake or two to pair with it.