Sunshine Muffins

Some mornings just seem to call for fresh baked muffins. In just 45 minutes, we were enjoying steaming cups of coffee with these muffins which are chock full of grated carrots and pears, nuts and raisins. We love these muffins smeared with cream cheese. All the healthy ingredients make me feel like I’ve had a dose of sunshine–a great feeling on a morning when it’s negative 9 degrees outside and we still have eleven days to go until we see the sunrise.┬áThe recipe below can be easily modified based on what’s in the kitchen.

Sunshine Muffins:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • 1 pear – peeled, cored and shredded
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup mashed overripe banana
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups, or line with paper muffin liners.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in the carrot, raisins, nuts, and shredded pear.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat together eggs, applesauce, mashed banana, and vanilla. Stir egg mixture into the carrot/flour mixture, just until moistened. Scoop batter into prepared muffin cups.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes, until a wooden toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean.

Yields 12 muffins.

White Chocolate Chip Pear Butter Bread

I impressed myself when this came out of the oven. It had that perfect rich baked brown crust on the top with a beautiful crack that revealed the white chocolate chips. The whole pan of bread disappeared in two days!

I had made pear butter the weekend before with a dozen bruised and ailing pears. I found a recipe that called for pears, orange juice, orange zest and nutmeg. I cooked it in a crock pot over night and finished it with some pectin in the freezer. It turned out wonderfully. It was dark and thick, sweet and spicy with a lovely citrus note.

I thought the pear butter would work really well in a sweet bread. I found a recipe for apple butter bread and altered it to suit my needs. I added chopped pecans and white chocolate chips for a surprise.