Friday, October 12, 2012

APPLE MUFFINS WITH CINNAMON CREAM CHEESE CENTERS


Hello, dear Reader! Happy fall! I'm back with another ode to fall, and with three words that make me feel warm just thinking about them: cinnamon, sugar, apple. Mmm :) I snatched this recipe from the fabulous Lizzy at YourCupofCake to make these muffins for some last minute gifts. While in the oven, they filled my entire apartment with the most cozy and delicious fall scent.


The day I was planning to bake them, my father-in-law sent us a picture of his house in Illinois - in the humble hometown that both my husband and myself call home. The leaves were turning yellow and orange, and the grass was turning crisp, and he wrote that it had been 30 degrees that morning. That's the beginning of fall in the Midwest. We call it sweater weather. It's tights and boots. It's crunching under your feet. You can see your breath in the morning, but the sun feels warm in the afternoon. It makes "cinnamon-sugar-apple" even more warm and cozy than it already is.

Well this is our very first fall outside of the Midwest, and California hasn't really given us the sweater weather we've been waiting for. However, on the morning I'd planned to make these muffins, it was chilly. Chilly, gray, and a little bit windy. Nate suggested we leave the windows open and bundle up... what a great idea! So for a couple hours we managed to enjoy sweater weather in our apartment, and all the while these delicious little muffins baked their perfect scent right into our fall morning.

It is a happy fall, indeed. :)


Apple Muffins with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Centers
(adapted slightly from YourCupofCake)


INGREDIENTS: 

Muffins:
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
¼ cup oil
1 cup applesauce
2 eggs
1 ¼ teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¾ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup buttermilk
2 cups peeled chopped apples
Topping:
½ cup brown sugar
1 T flour
2 T melted butter



Filling:
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
1/3 cup powdered sugar





DIRECTIONS:

Mix together filling ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate.
For muffins:
Beat sugars, oil, and applesauce. Add eggs and vanilla.
Mix together dry ingredients, and add gradually to wet ingredients.
Stir in buttermilk and chopped apples.
Remove filling from fridge.
Fill muffin tins 1/4 full with batter. Spoon cream cheese mixture over. Cover cream cheese mixture with remaining batter.
Mix topping ingredients together and spoon onto muffins.
Bake at 375, 13 - 15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.



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