greetings, fine friends, on this sunny, cool detroit monday. what a lovely monday it’s been. so far, i’ve

  • slept in
  • laid around
  • made muffins
  • made some more muffins
  • ate the leftover batter
  • day dreamed while gazing out the window. things are so green! so bright! so spring!
  • imagined some ramp and green garlic pesto recipes

pretty much, today is just fantastic.

i know you’ve been waiting all week for this monday’s muffin extravaganza. i was originally thinking i’d make three varieties to celebrate the third week of muffin monday. but then, i made two, and feel content in these two. it’s probably also because lately, our house seems to explode baked goods. it’s kind of crazy. cookies, rhubarb bars, more cookies, muffins. every day, it’s another baked good. NOT THAT I’M COMPLAINING… clearly, a baking house is a happy house. we are very happy.

now, for the goods stuff. this week’s inspired muffins. friends, i give you gooseberry crisp muffins & vanilla java porter gingerbread muffins!

the gooseberry muffins feature detroit gooseberries from 2009. (still cleaning out the freezer! such a fun thing to do!) the batter was thicker, lumpier than most other muffins i’ve made. tara told me it looked like oatmeal as i scooped it into the muffin tin, and i couldn’t disagree. oatmeal with balls of red, tart loveliness. the end result? a dense, delightful muffin. crunchy on the outside, soft and moist on the inside. kind of like baby gooseberry crisps. mmmm.

while these were cooling, i decided to commence muffin adventure numero dos. this time, my aim was to use up some vanilla java porter that’s been hanging out in our fridge for a while. i found this recipe on for stout gingerbread and decided this beer would be a lovely substitute for guinness or other such stout. the recipe comes from the gramercy tavern (looks pretty swanky to me!). the batter: velvety, a hushed brown. fragrant with spice, with porter, with a molasses-y warmth. the result? light, moist, smooth and satisfying. it’s probably more of a cake than a muffin. regardless, a happy treat for monday muffin.

i made this week’s muffins in honor of two exciting things. first, for my friends patrick and stacey on the acquisition of monday. i mean, it’s named monday! it seemed appropriate to welcome monday with monday muffins. second, for the villages soccer team. yes, i’m playing co-ed soccer and am loving it. i come home with grass-stained knees and feel like i’m back in bexley, ohio, playing in CESA U-10 league. ha. these muffins though, what better than beer infused muffins to get our game on?

gooseberry crisp muffins

3/4 cup graham flour
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup oats
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 grates of fresh nutmeg
1/2 cup butter
1/3 c sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup whey (or buttermilk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups gooseberries, tipped and stemmed

1. preheat the oven to 350. grease muffin tin.
2. whisk dry ingredients in large bowl (flour through nutmeg).
3. in separate bowl, cream butter and sugar till smooth. add eggs, whey, and vanilla, and mix until smooth. fold in gooseberries.
4. add dry ingredients, combine until just mixed. using a 1/3 cup scoop, fill muffin tins and bake for 10 minutes. turn the pan to ensure even baking. continue baking for 10-15 more minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. enjoy!

vanilla java porter gingerbread muffins

check out the recipe from gramercy tavern. substitute the oat stout for vanilla java porter (for all you detroiters, or for all you with access to atwater beer) and follow the rest of the directions listed. the batter makes too much for 12 muffins. the muffins baked for about 25 minutes total. i used the leftover batter in a small bread pan, which baked for about 50 minutes.