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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Cream and Spice Muffins

These muffins are my favorite on a cold winter morning, because they have just a hint of sweetness . . . and a savory, warm, "holiday" kind of taste.  I have mentioned before how my Aunt Kristie sent me a surprise package in the mail when we lived in Arkansas: it was a wonderful and beautiful cookbook called 1 Mix, 100 Muffins, by Susanna Tee.  [I just found out she has a new book called Whoopies! and it is on my Christmas wishlist, Allen Santa].

Growing up in a family of eight kids, we didn't have muffins very often, but whenever we did have them, it was always with hot cereal.  It has always seemed incredibly opulent to me to have a breakfast in which muffins are the main (or only) course.  Consequently, I don't really eat muffins without Cream O'Wheat or oatmeal or hot cracked wheat cereal.

If you don't like Cream O' Wheat, know that I feel
sorry for you.  From the bottom of my heart.
I have great memories of my dad making hot breakfast every morning.  We had cold cereal for breakfast only on Saturday mornings--other than that, it was an after-school snack.  Thanks to this tradition, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day for me.  I wake up hungry every morning, whether I am up at 5:30 or 7:00 or 10:00.  Cold cereal satisfies my hunger for about one hour, so I still eat a hot breakfast most mornings: usually eggs and whole wheat toast, or oatmeal and toast.

But muffins make my breakfast special.  And my square muffin pan pushes "special" to "amazing."

If you want to try out something new for breakfast, this is a great muffin to get you started.  I also think they're a great complimentary treat for hot cocoa.

Square Muffin Pans use regular old muffin liners--when you fill them
with muffin batter, they form into the shape.
Like so . . .
Out of the oven and ready for dusting.
Winter wonderland . . .
My kids love it when I get out the muffin rack.
I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.  If it's not sweet enough for you, may I suggest my all-time favorite muffin?  Cinnamon Ripples . . .