I was cruisin' the supermarket the other morning and happened upon the beer/wine aisle ... can't think how that happened, but it did. Good old Sam Adams and about a kazillion other micros were touting their seasonal brews. Boy, it was a tough decision! I picked up the latest mid-sized box of Noble Pils from Sam Adams' brewhouse and moved on to get the makings for my 'muffin de jour', or should I say my 'seasonal muffin' ?
Maple walnut muffins can't be made with the freshest of fresh too often! There is a window of time in the Spring that sits about four weeks wide ... mid-March to early April. It's called sap season. The best of the maple syrup gets made about now. Suck it up and make your pancakes and blintzes, baked ham, bacon wrapped scallops, squash and maple butter, maple walnut fudge, cheesecakes and cakes right now! There is NO better time.
That being said ... I made maple walnut muffins today to have with coffee and tea. The recipe comes from The Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook. Those ladies at The Silver Palate know a sweet and chewy muffin that's packed with fiber and nuts and sweet goodness when they see one!
Begin by chopping some softened butter into a measure of chopped walnuts.
Spread the buttery walnuts on a rimmed pan and roast in a 350 oven for about 10 minutes, then remove and cool.
Whisk together dry ingredients ... use old-fashioned oats ... those big chewy ones!
Chop some pitted dates ... not too small. You want chewy chunks in those muffins!
Whip together eggs, cream, maple syrup, and maple extract and turn in the dry ingredients, dates, and most of those buttered nuts ... don't overmix!
Fill lined muffin cups three quarters of the way and top each muffin with a teaspoon of the buttered nuts and a little drizzle of maple syrup. This recipe makes 20 muffins ... enough to knosh and share!
Of course! You must eat one warm from the oven!
Stored covered, these muffins retain incredible moisture and have a nice shiny maple glaze.