I’m still wrapped up in my latest issue of Cook’s Illustrated. I recently made oatmeal and cranberry muffins, which are basically Cook’s muffins, minus a crumb topping and with dried cranberries. We have lots of dried cranberries at our house. I think G. bought 10 pounds at the cranberry festival this year.
The most significant thing about this muffin recipe is that you make your own oat flour. Don’t fret, it’s not hard, and it ensures freshness and a richer flavor than you’d get with preprocessed flour.
One word before I pass on the recipe: These muffins were amazing when they came out of the oven. G. and I could barely contain ourselves. But, they start to go stale rapidly. So make them when you have a crowd or freeze the ones you don’t eat and thaw them as needed.
Oatmeal and Cranberry Muffins
2 tablespoons butter, plus 6 tablespoons melted
6 ounces rolled oats
8 3/4 ounces all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
9 1/3 ounces brown sugar
1 3/4 cup milk
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup dried cranberries
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Put the oats in the pan, stir and toast them. When they are ready, they will smell like popcorn. This takes about 5 to 8 minutes.
Put the oats in a food processor and process for about 30 seconds. You will end up with a fine oat flour. Combine it with the all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
Stir the 6 tablespoons of butter and sugar together in a bowl. Add the milk and eggs and whisk until smooth. Do not over beat or you will get air pockets in your muffins.
Fold half of the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Make sure there are no lumps. Then fold in the second half of the flour mixture. Set the batter aside for 20 minutes. This is important because it allows the oat flour to absorb moisture and the batter to thicken.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour your muffin tin.
Stir the dried cranberries into the batter. Then scoop the batter into the muffin tin. Cook’s said the recipe makes 12 muffins. It made 18 for me, but mine were small.
Bake the muffins for about 20 minutes. A toothpick inserted in them should come out clean. Eat them soon. Not that this is a chore. You’ll want to.