Pie in the Middle Muffins

I think my new theme for the food blog is going to be after school snacks. Don’t worry, I’ll get to sharing other fantastic recipes soon enough but it seems that my recipe searches as of late are centered around finding easy to prepare, good after school snacks. I’m also still on the apple theme, probably because we’re looking at going apple picking in a few weekends.

This is not my original recipe but rather comes out of one of my Taste of Home magazines. This muffin is labor intensive if you’re chopping the apples and making the apple filling from scratch. On the other hand, it is impressive to serve to guests, because gosh, who doesn’t love a filled muffin? If you’re running short on time, you can simply use canned apple pie filling. But being the purist that I am, I never do that. I also suspect that you can use other fruits besides apples, like perhaps frozen diced peaches, or blueberries. (I’ve never tried it though. If you do–please let me know how it turns out!)

You will need for the filling:

1 can of pie filling OR

2 tablespoons of butter

1/3 cup of packed brown sugar

1 tablespoon of flour

½ tsp of cinnamon

A pinch of nutmeg

2 cups diced and peeled apples

½ cup finely chopped nuts (I place nuts in a Ziploc baggie and then roll the sealed bag with a rolling pin to get finely chopped nuts.)

For the muffins:

¾ cup butter

1 ½ cups sugar

3 eggs

1 ½ tsp vanilla

3 ½ cups of flour

1 ½ tsp baking powder

1 ½ tsp baking soda

¾ tsp salt

1 ½ cups (12 ounces) of sour cream

Cinnamon sugar

Directions:

In a sauce pan, melt the butter. Stir in the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg until smooth. Add the apples and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. (Be careful not to let the sugar scorch.) Remove from heat, and stir in nuts. Cool completely.

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after you add each one. Beat in the vanilla. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream.

Spoon ¼ cupfuls into jumbo muffin cups. Spoon apple mixture into the center of each. Top with remaining batter so that the cup is about two thirds full. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the muffin comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.

Note: If you’re going to use regular sized muffin cups, fill cups half full with batter; add a rounded teaspoonful of apple mixture and remaining batter. Bake for about 16 minutes.

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