Cranberry Spice Muffins for “Just Say No to Doughnuts Week”

Cranberries, pumpkin, a lovely spice combination and optional maple glaze combine to make these decadent, moist muffins with a beautiful crumb. I’ve upped the sweetness to match the tartness of the cranberries, but you can play with that. On the other hand, this is my entree for kickin’ the doughnut habit. A couple things to keep in mind when baking without much fat and no eggs. The leavening and binding is accomplished through science and it happens as soon as the wet ingredient come into contact with the dry. SO, remember to have your oven preheated and your muffin tins or cups oiled and ready to go so you can transport them quickly into the oven.

Cranberry Spice Muffins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
Lightly oil 16 muffin cups or 12 muffin cups and 12 mini muffin cups. You can use baking foil or papers if you like, but it’s not necessary.

Sift together and set aside:
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
¾ cup unbleached all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
¾ tsp. ground ginger
¼ tsp. ground cloves

Combine and set aside to curdle:
½ cup milk
1 tsp. lemon juice

Whisk together:
1 cup pumpkin puree
½ cup turbinado sugar
½ cup brown sugar
6 T sunflower oil
½ cup soymilk
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 T flax eggs* or 2 EnerG Replacer Eggs

After curdling the soymilk for five minutes, whisk it into the pumpkin mixture. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir together with a spatula. Fold in:
½ cup (heaping) cranberries (I used fresh)
½ cup (heaping) chopped walnuts

Using a 1/4 cup measure, quickly fill the muffin cups (use a heaping spoonful for the mini muffins). Bake for 25-30 minutes (18 for the mini muffins). Let cool on a rack for ten minutes before removing from the tins. If you want to add the glaze, wait until the muffins have completely cooled. Then, whisk together:
2/3 cup powdered sugar
3 T pure maple syrup

I put mine in a squeeze bottle and drizzled away. However, I think the glaze is only necessary for those needing a sugar fix. These muffins are sweet and perfectly delicious without the glaze. This is how they look at the topless beach.

*You can get a nice step-by-step tutorial of flax eggs here

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