Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Pumpkin Gingerbread Muffins with Nutmeg Glaze

This is a recipe I clipped from the 1993 November/December issue of Eating Well Magazine. These are perfect to bake up this time of year.  They have more of a moist cake texture than a muffin.  

Get your muffin tins lined if you so desire. When I make these to enjoy at home I don't use cupcake liners.  I took these to Sunday school class and thought it better to have them in a liner.

Mix dates, raisins and candied ginger together with the brandy.  Give a toss and set aside.

Along with the fruits and ginger that is flavored by the brandy, these muffins are kissed with all of these great spices.

Sift them in with the flour along with the baking soda, salt & pepper.  Set this bowl aside.

In another small bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla.  Set this aside.  I have no earthly idea why I did not take a photo of this mixture.  We'll all live.

Now we get to assemble everything else.

In a stand mixer, beat the eggs and egg yolks until they are frothy.

Mix in the brown sugar

and the the molasses

Add 1/2 the flour/spice mixture and stir until just mixed.

add the melted butter

and the oil

Add the remaining flour/spice mix

and stir until incorporated.

Add the bowl of the pumpkin mixture and combine well.

Fold in the dates, raisins and candied ginger that has absorbed some of the brandy.  Pour in all the brandy left in the bowl as well.  Can't leave out the good stuff!

Fill each muffin liner 2/3 full and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Allow the muffins to cool a bit in the pans while you mix together the glaze.

Transfer the muffins to a cooling wrack that has been set over some wax paper.  Drizzle with the glaze.  You can also dip the tops off the muffins directly in the glaze.

I had some extra batter so I made several mini-muffins to throw in the freezer.

Pumpkin Gingerbread Muffins with Nutmeg Glaze
Adapted from Eating Well Magazine
Yield 24 regular-sized muffins

for the muffins:
1/2 cup chopped pitted dates 
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup minced crystallized ginger
3 Tbsp. rum, brandy, or apple cider (I used brandy)
2-1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached white flour
2 Tbsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1-1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup skim-milk buttermilk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1-1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil, preferably canola oil

for the glaze
1-1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
1-1/2 Tbsp. rum, brandy, or apple cider
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Treat 24 muffin tins with vegetable spray, or line with muffin liners.
Prep and measure all of your ingredients.

In a small bowl, soak dates, raisins and crystallized ginger in the brandy, stirring from time to time while preparing the batter.

Sift flour, ginger, allspice, nutmeg cinnamon, cloves, baking soda, salt and pepper together in a mixing bowl.  Set aside.  In a small bowl whisk together the pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer beat eggs and egg whites at medium speed until foamy.  Gradually add brown sugar and beat until light and frothy, about 1 minute.  Add molasses and beat well.

Add half of the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just combined, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Add butter and oil and beat until just mixed.  Add the remaining flour mixture and beat until just mixed.  Add the pumpkin mixture and beat until just combined.  Stir in the dried fruit mixture and soaking liquid.

Fill the muffin tins with batter, 2/3 full.  Tap tins to get rid of air bubbles.  

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean.  Cool the muffins briefly in the pan on a rack for 2 minutes, then turn onto a cooling rack.  (the muffins can be prepared ahead and store, well wrapped, in the freezer for up to 1 month.  To reheat wrap in aluminum foil and heat at 375° for 20 - 30 minutes.)

Nutmeg Glaze:
In a small bowl, stir together the confectioner's sugar, milk, brandy, & grated nutmeg until smooth.  Drizzle the glaze over the warm muffins, letting the glaze drip down the sides.