There are certain things that we can all agree on. And one of those is that when you are sick with a highly contagious infection, you probably shouldn’t prepare food for consumption by other people. But what if you think you only have a chest cold? What if you are a pregnant lady who assumes that body aches and pains along with fatigue are normal (generally – they are!). What if the average temperature in your region has been hovering close to single digits – are chills unexpected? I think if all of these things are true, and you are me, and you wash your hands about 10 times during the baking of a new recipe, and also are sure to direct your coughing and sneezing in a non-kitchen-ward direction, it might be ok.
Spoiler alert: it looks like things were ok. And yes – this is all to say that I had the flu (like, serious business “THE FLU”), and was eventually put on antivirals and stayed home for two days despite not wanting to “waste” my sick leave since I’ve got to use it in the upcoming month or so for my baby.
In any case, we had our book club meeting, and I was on a mini-muffin kick, so when I told the group I was going to try and make some kind of cinnamon-sugar mini muffin, friend A suggested a recipe she’d used before from King Arthur Flour, and since she’s such a good cook, I went, “OK” immediately. And because it’s a recipe from a food company, it was thoroughly vetted, and I followed the instructions exactly with this one (modified baking time for mini muffins is at the bottom of the page in the “Tips” section). And they turned out perfectly. So perfectly that my guinea-pig taste-testing step-daughters went all, “OMG – THESE ARE SO GOOD”. And book club members gobbled many up (perhaps a little tepidly knowing I’d made them, despite my protestations about hand-washing), and even asked for the recipe.
When I got home, the Boy raved about how good the few that I’d left behind were. And the awesomest part is that while the recipe says it will yield about 30 muffins, I got closer to 48 (which was ok, since my mini-muffin pan holds 2 dozen at a time). So there were lots left over. In fact, I had a couple days worth of breakfast with them during my time having the flu, and having a delicious, munch-able breakfast that was sweet, but not too sweet (perfect with tea!) was exactly what I was looking for at that time.
They do taste a little bit like donuts that have been converted into muffins/mini-muffins. There are also directions on how to bake these into donuts if you happen to have a donut pan, which I do not. Do what you want. They will be delicious no matter how you prepare them.
Cinnamon-Sugar Donut Mini Muffins
Yield: About 4 dozen mini-muffins
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 to 1 1/4 teaspoons ground nutmeg, to taste
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups All-Purpose Flour
1 cup milk
3 tablespoons melted butter
3 tablespoons cinnamon sugar
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a mini muffin tin, or line with paper or silicone muffin cups, and grease the cups with non-stick vegetable oil spray; this will ensure that they peel off the muffins nicely.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, cream together the butter, vegetable oil, and sugars till smooth. Add the eggs, beating to combine. Stir in the baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla. Stir the flour into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined.
Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan, filling the cups nearly full.
Bake the muffins for 12 to 13 minutes, or until they’re a pale golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle of one of the center muffins comes out clean.
Remove them from the oven, and let them cool for a couple of minutes, or until you can handle them. While they’re cooling, melt the butter for the topping (this is easily done in the microwave). Use a pastry brush to paint the top of each muffin with the butter, then sprinkle with the cinnamon-sugar. Or simply dip the tops of muffins into the melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon-sugar.
Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Store for a day or so at room temperature.