Everyone knows muffins are really cake--The Cake Bible comes right out and calls these cupcakes--but compared to last week's crumb cake, these dense and delicious zucchini muffins are practically health food. Before the tins went into the oven, I looked at the batter, chunky with a whopping two packed cups of grated zucchini, and questioned whether it could emerge with any kind of crumb. But the recipe came through--how could I doubt Rose Levy Beranbaum?
I substituted 1/3 cup sunflower seeds and 1/3 cup rolled oats for the walnuts. I'm sure the called-for walnuts would be even tastier, if your loved ones are allergy-free. If you don't like oil in sweets you might try melted butter instead.
As summer slips into fall, I would serve these with butternut squash muffins, either all on their own, or as a sweet-savory bread basket alongside a roast--perhaps pork tenderloin with arugula, endive and walnut vinaigrette.
- 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour (I used all-purpose flour and did not sift)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup safflower or canola oil
- 2 cups (firmly packed) grated zucchini--use largest holes on box grater
- 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°.
In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, spices and walnuts. Whisk well to blend.
In a mixing bowl beat the eggs, sugar and oil for 2 to 3 minutes or until very smooth. Add the zucchini and beat just until smooth. Add the dry ingredients and optional raisins and beat until completely moistened.
Scrape the batter into greased and floured (or paper cup-lined) muffin tins, filling each cup 3/4 full. Bake 20-25 minutes, until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes. Unmold onto the rack. Cool completely and wrap airtight.