Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Adapted from Annie's Eats

These are a delicious fall treat that I highly recommend trying. They are not your typical easy muffin, they do require some prep work, and the filling has to be made a few hours in advance. But trust me they are totally worth the extra time and work. I'm not typically a baker, but when I saw these I knew I had to make them asap! Luckily our store is finally stocking pumpkin and I bought up as much as I could fit into my cart. Enjoy these delicious muffins, and the wonderful scent of fall will fill your house!

Yield: 24 muffins
For the filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar

For the muffins:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 15oz. can pumpkin puree
1¼ cups vegetable oil

For the topping:
½ cup sugar
5 tbsp. flour
1½ tsp. ground cinnamon
4 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

To prepare the filling, combine the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar in a medium bowl and mix well until blended and smooth.  Transfer the mixture to a piece of plastic wrap and shape into a log about 1½-inches in diameter.  Smooth the plastic wrap tightly around the log, and reinforce with a piece of foil.  Transfer to the freezer and chill until at least slightly firm, at least 3 hours.
To make the muffins, preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Line muffin pans with paper liners.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin pie spice, salt and baking soda; whisk to blend.  In the bowl of an electric mixer combine the eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree and oil.  Mix on medium-low speed until blended.  With the mixer on low speed, add in the dry ingredients, mixing just until incorporated.
To make the topping, combine the sugar, flour and cinnamon in a small bowl; whisk to blend.  Add in the butter pieces and cut into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender or two forks until the mixture is coarse and crumbly.  Transfer to the refrigerator until ready to use.
To assemble the muffins, fill each muffin well with a small amount of batter, just enough to cover the bottom of the liner (1-2 tablespoons).  Slice the log of cream cheese filling into 24 equal pieces.  Place a slice of the cream cheese mixture into each muffin well.  Divide the remaining batter among the muffin cups, placing on top of the cream cheese to cover completely.  Sprinkle the topping mixture over each of the muffin wells, about 1 teaspoon per muffin.
Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before serving.  (It may be hard to resist immediate consumption, but the cream cheese filling gets very hot!)

We loved these! They are so yummy, and moist. Overall it was a pretty easy recipe, even though it has a lot of steps to it, (and I'm not a baker) they turned out wonderful. I very highly recommend trying these this holiday season, they'd be a wonderful treat for a Thanksgiving breakfast or a delicious dessert served with hot coffee! 5 stars.

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Pizza Bites

Adapted from Annie's Eats. 

This dough recipe is for a Bread Machine. If you don't have one you can either make it in a stand mixer, or use your favorite refrigerated pizza dough. I highly recommend you try this recipe out and soon! It's a huge kid pleaser and fun for something a little different.

Dough: (This recipe makes one 16 inch Pizza)
1 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 teaspoons garlic powder

Shredded Mozzarella, about 1/2-1 teaspoon per bite
Sliced pepperoni

For topping:
Olive oil
Italian seasoning
Grated Parmesan cheese
Granulated Garlic

Preheat the oven to 400˚ F.  Lightly grease a 9-inch pie plate or cake pan.  Divide the pizza dough into 20-24 roughly equal sized pieces.  Take one of the dough pieces, top with mozzarella and a slice or two of pepperoni.  Pull the edges of the dough around the fillings and pinch closed.  Place seam-side down in the baking dish.  Repeat with the remaining dough pieces. Lightly brush the tops of the dough balls with olive oil.  Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and grated Parmesan cheese and/or garlic.  Bake for 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.  Serve warm, with dipping sauce as desired.

These were Great!!! I very very highly recommend you make these immediately! They were a big hit with my 2 year old who asked for them for breakfast and lunch today, (don't worry he only ate them for lunch!). They were very easy to make, and such a fun break from the tradition of normal pizza. We dipped them in some warm pizza sauce and it was great! I plan to make a big batch of these and keep them in the freezer for whenever the mood strikes! 5 stars.

*Pizza Dough adapted from Bread Machine Magic

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