Thursday, 25 March 2010

Chocolate Orange Muffins

The other day I bought an obscenely huge bag of navel oranges. Since I know that my family probably won't be able to eat them all before they shrivel up I decided to find a recipe to use them up.

The first thought that popped into my tastefully highlighted head was Terry's Chocolate Orange. You know what I'm talking about, right? Chocolate and orange never tasted so good!

So how could I combine chocolate and orange to subdue my craving? The first kind of recipe to pop into my head? Muffins, of course. So I went out onto the web in search of a nice, moist muffin. I found one but then tweaked it to make it mine. Instead of grating chocolate into the batter (I'm much too lazy) I just used chocolate chips. I also increased the orange zest A LOT. Go big or go home when it comes to using zest, I always say. To me, the smell of orange or lemon zest is up there on my list of favourite smells along with a freshly washed baby, freshly brewed coffee and Shemar Moore (or at least I'm assuming he smells as good as he looks!). Mmm, Shemar ........ but again, I digress. Back to muffins ...

Last Christmas my mother-in-law, as part of my gift, bought me a microplane (see picture on the right). It's perfect for zesting citrus fruits so that you get a nice fine consistency of zest, not the chunky, stringy kind. It also helps you just take off the 'zest' (orange part) not the underlying white 'pith' which is bitter. I highly recommend getting one.

These muffins smelled wonderful while they baked. Heck, the batter smelled wonderful. They came out and their texture was moist and light. I'm assuming that, if they survive my husband and children after school/work, that the flavour will only get better and stronger by tomorrow.

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup orange juice
zest from 2 oranges
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400F. In a medium bowl, combine butter and sugar. Mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring in between each addition. Add sour cream, orange juice and zest.

In another medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well. Slowly add to butter mixture, making sure not to overmix. Fold in chocolate chips.

Fill paper-lined muffin tins 3/4 full and bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean. Let muffins sit in tins for 5 minutes before removing them to completely cool on a wire rack.

Yield: 18 muffins


Anonymous said...

Mmmmm, Shemar!
Ooops-you distracted me as well with thoughts of him.
The muffins look great btw-we'll try them today once DDs get home.

Laurie said...

The muffin I tried tasted good and I'll have my kids try one after school to get their thoughts on them. Now, if I could only get a picture of Shemar eating one of my muffins ... THAT would truly be delicious! ;)

Anonymous said...

You are a baking goddess..I LOVE chocolate and orange together and never thought of doing it in a muffin.Well l am off to bake some thank you thank you!!!!

Laurie said...

Oh my! Here I was only aiming for Baking Sainthood but you've elevated me to Baking Goddess!! Yay for me!!! :)

I hope you like them, Anonymous! Chocolate and orange are definitely a great combo. I only had semi-sweet chocolate chips and they taste great but I think the dark chocolate would taste even better!!!

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