I’m a proud sharer of Smitten Kitchen‘s recipes. Best Birthday Cake is one of my go-tos, as is. You don’t mess with perfection. Sometimes, though, I like to play around. When I saw the post regarding pear and hazelnut muffins, I had to give them a try. Especially when I realized I had some slightly past ripe pears in the fruit drawer and a bag of hazelnut flour in my freezer.
I plan to have two, toasted and buttered, for breakfast. Delish!
Since I’ve fiddled with the original a bit, here is my recipe, inspired by sk‘s:
Spiced Hazelnut Pear Muffins
inspired by smitten kitchen’s
yields 12-18 muffins, depending on your pans/liners
Preheat the oven to 425°F (note: you will drop the heat when you put these in!). Line your muffin tins with paper liners. Start with a dozen, see how much batter you are left with before lining more.
In a large bowl, combine the following. I like to use my dough whisk, but a wooden spoon, spatula, or spoonula will work just fine:
- 6 T. butter, melted and cooled a tad
- 2/3 c. light brown sugar
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 1/2 t. vanilla extract
- 1 c. buttermilk (or, 1 T. white vinegar + enough milk to fill an 8 oz measuring cup, which is what I did)
- 2 soft pears, skinned and grated (roughly 1 – 1 1/2 c. altogether)
In another bowl, smaller is okay, combine the following:
- 1 1/2 c. white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 c. hazelnut flour*
- 3/4 c. rolled oats
- 3/4 t. salt
- 3/4 t. baking soda
- 2 t. baking powder
- 1/2 t. freshly crushed cardamom (from about 8 dried pods**)
- 1/2 t. freshly grated nutmeg
Add the dry to the wet, and stir until everything is combined, but don’t over-mix! Now, spoon the batter into the liners until they’re almost full (this batter doesn’t rise enormously and the ones pictured aren’t quite as full as they could have been) and put them into your hot over. Immediately drop the heat to 375°F and set a 20 minute timer.
Check for doneness with a bamboo skewer, toothpick, cake tester or whatever. If it comes out clean, you’re good. If not, put ’em back in for 3-5 minutes and test again. Mine took 23 minutes.
Let them cool for ten minutes in the pan before you take them out. Use the time to bring the oven back up to the higher temp for the remaining muffins. I like to put about 1/2″ of water in the empty muffin spaces to keep the heat consistent during baking.
*like my dough whisk, my hazelnut flour is from King Arthur Flour, but you can find it around, or do like sk does and use crushed hazelnuts.
**I get the dried pods from a local Indian grocery in 1/2 lb. bags. Crack them open like a soft pistachio and remove the black seeds to crush them.