Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Cranberry Oatmeal Muffins

     No matter how fun it can be to bake delicate fruit tarts and sky-high layer cakes, sometimes I just need some classic, less indulgent breakfast. A few weeks ago, when I was studying all weekend, everything became magically, a million times more interesting than history. Suddenly, when faced with a stack of notes and review books, oatmeal muffins seemed like the perfect study break.
      I decided to throw in a little twist with some dried cranberries, but other than that these muffins are super simple. You could throw in any add-ins you want, but don't get crazy - these are meant to be simple. They are full of oatmeal and have less sugar and fat than most muffins, making them okay for an everyday breakfast.
     Maybe I shouldn't have started with the healthy description, because that tends to make bakers disappear - but bear with me. These are hearty, yes, but in the best way possible. They are moist, sprinkled with dried cranberries throughout, and they are absolutely delicious! Especially with a bit of jelly (or nutella, but let's keep it healthier here). This recipe is definitely a keeper in my kitchen.
Cranberry Oatmeal Muffins

2 cups rolled oats (not quick-cooking oats)
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Grease well a 12-cup muffin tin, or line with paper liners.
In a medium-size bowl, mix the oats and the milk and set aside for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients, making a well in the center. Stir in the liquid ingredients and the oatmeal mixture until just combined, being careful not to overmix. Batter may be lumpy.
Fill the muffin cups about 3/4 full. Bake for 16-18 minutes until lightly golden or a cake tester inserted into center of muffin comes out with moist crumbs attached. Don't overbake.
    -makes 12 muffins

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