It is that time of year once again. You know, the time of year in which the leaves start to change colors, the air becomes cool and crisp, and cranberries can be found on the grocery store shelf. For the first time this year, I noticed bags of fresh cranberries in the produce aisle of my local grocery store this past weekend and I immediately knew I had to buy them. They were a bit of an impulse purchase, so I didn't really have any plans, but I bought a container of orange juice and a couple of oranges in order to have a complementary flavor available, and hurried home to start working on my impromptu cranberry project.
That said, it didn't take long before I knew what I was making. I haven't had a muffin since I made these over a month ago and I happen to have a recipe for cranberry orange muffins, so the decision was easy and, as far as I am concerned, correctly made. These muffins are wonderful. The tart cranberries play nicely against the sweet, orange-flavored dough and, miraculously enough, they come in at well under 200 calories each. That said, now I have to figure out some way to use the rest of the bag. Candied cranberries anyone?
Cranberry Orange Muffins
Slightly adapted from Food.com
Yield: 12 muffins
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar plus 1 tbsp of sugar for sprinkling on top of the muffins
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp grated orange rind
3/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup cranberries
- Line muffin pan with paper liners or grease it. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, 3/4 cup of sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and orange rind. In a separate bowl, whisk wet ingredients together.
- Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ones. Mix just until they are combined--do not overmix the batter. Fold in cranberries.
- Fill muffin tins until approximately 3/4 full.
- Sprinkle muffins with sugar.
- Bake for 17-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted through the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Calories: one muffin has approximately 222 calories.
*Note: The food.com calculation left out values for both the oil and the orange juice.