Thursday, February 25, 2010

Good Morning, Muffin.

I love the idea of getting up on the weekend and whipping together a fancy breakfast. But as you can see from the number of breakfast recipes on this blog, morning and I don't get along that well. I can't hold a conversation before I've had my coffee, much less measure out flour.

This recipe is a blessed exception, in no small part to Bisquick which cuts out a lot of the measuring I was just referring to. Also a blessing is the fact that the cream cheese can come straight from the fridge, erasing any forethought on my part as to letting it soften ahead of time. This way it doesn't melt into the batter but stays in little chunks throughout, adding to the delight of the muffin. You'll notice I omit the addition of salt because Bisquick has it in there, but if you're a devout believer in its flavor enhancing ability you can add in a tiny pinch to the batter. (I do, but then again I'm not on the cover of Health magazine, either.)

And of course, you can fitz and futz with this recipe until the cows come home with creative additions and variations (some of which are at the bottom of this post) but what I was going for here was a good, quick muffin whose prep bowl and utensils I could wash up long before they even come out of the oven. That way, my inner ice queen stays dormant, and I can actually tell my dear husband when I hand him a hot muffin, 'Good Morning.' And mean it.

Strawberry, Granola and Cream Cheese Muffins
2 cups Bisquick
1/3 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon
2/3 cup granola - your favorite brand (I like vanilla and dried cherry)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 egg, lightly beaten
2/3 cup milk (not skim)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries, chopped
2 oz cream cheese, broken into little bits with your fingers (if you really want that creamy tang in every bite - double this)

Preheat your oven to 350 if it's convection, 375 if it's not convection. Grease a 12 cup muffin pan well with nonstick spray, set onto a good quality baking sheet, and set aside.

Meanwhile, place the Bisquick, sugar, granola, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a large mixing bowl and stir well with a spoon. Make a well in the center, then pour in the egg, milk, oil, and vanilla. Stir just until the mixture is moistened and there are no lumps, then gently stir in the fruit mixing lightly, then the cream cheese. Use an ice cream scoop to divy the batter between your muffin cups making the additions as even as possible, and bake for 15-18 minutes, JUST until the tops are a light golden color. Let cool in the pan for 3 minutes, then carefully invert onto a cooling rack. Serve warm with either a pat of butter, cream cheese, or jam.

Meat and Potatoes Addition Options/Variations:
* add a pinch of lemon or orange zest
* sub chopped fresh mango for the strawberries, or a combination
* add 3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

1 comment:

Ashley said...

Looks delicious! We're big weekend breakfast people too. But eggs and hashbrowns sometimes gets old, so this would be a good way to shake things up!

And I'm totally the same with coffee too. I'm like that guy in the new McDonald's commercials!