cooking · · monday

Some Monday Magic

Today is gray.   That steely misty kind of gray that makes you think it’s only about 40 degrees outside and the day is demanding scarves and hot lattes.  Except it’s 65 and humid.  That’s just a yucky kind of gray.

So liven up your Monday with this.  Those muffins are magical with a caramel latte, I promise.

I had some of my fellow MOPS moms over the other morning to drink coffee and sample new recipes and delay the laundry just a little longer.  There’s nothing like spending the morning in the company of others who know the woes of cloth diapering, potty training, nursing, and bribing toddlers.  I have a friend who told the funniest story about how she tells her son she’ll give him a dollar if he goes potty.  So he does and she does, but then he sets that dollar down and runs off to play.  So she picks up the dollar and uses it for the next time.  Isn’t it great three year olds are so easily fooled?

Anyway, here’s what you really need to know.  Those muffins?  Cranberry-Orange Coffee Cakes with an Orange Glaze adapted from this month’s Better Homes and Gardens.  I think they might be my favorite muffins ever.   At least until I make the Pumpkin Cream Cheese muffin recipe I found the other day.

Cranberry-Orange Coffee Cakes

2 c all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 c butter, softened
1/2 c each packed brown and granulated sugars
1 c plain yogurt (original uses ricotta cheese)
1 egg
1 Tbsp. finely shredded orange peel
1 Tbsp. orange juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 c fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped (about half a bag and don’t use dried)
1/2 tsp ground ginger (original uses 2 Tbsp. finely chopped crystallized ginger but I can’t afford that)

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease muffin tins (I made 12 regular muffins and 12 mini muffins, orignal calls for 15 2-inch muffin cups).  Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and 1/4 tsp salt.  In a large bowl beat butter and sugars with electric mixer until fluffy.  Beat in yogurt, egg, orange peel, orange juice, and vanilla.  (Note: I zested my orange and then squeezed it for the juice.) Stir in flour mixture until just combined.  Fold in cranberries and ginger.

2.  Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.  Bake 20-25 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove and cool slightly.  Place on plate and glaze.  If you want, you can add some chopped walnuts or pecans, but I kind of abhor nuts in my bread, so that’s your call.

Orange Glaze: Combine 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 Tbsp. orange juice, and 1/2 tsp vanilla.  Stir in 2 Tbsp. melted butter and 1/2 tsp. shredded orange peel.  If too thin, add more sugar.  I like to pour it over the warm muffins.  Store leftovers in fridge and reheat for ten seconds in the microwave.

If you don’t want muffins, let me recommend the Caramel-Apple Coffee Cake from Southern Living.  It’s on page 112 if you still get pages you actually turn like I do.  It’s incredible.  You can also click here for the recipe.  Just know it makes way more than enough streusel and caramel toppings, so plan another use for those leftovers!

So here’s a picture of one thing we did today.  Gus is a really good junk sorter.  Pretty much everything behind him except that riding toy whose tail is sticking out and our hiking backpack will be donated somewhere soon.  And by “junk” I really mean perfectly useful items others will want and use but I don’t need.

Linked up with Carissa today.

miscellany monday at lowercase letters

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