Raspberry Almond Muffins with Cinnamon Sugar Topping

I’m still on my muffin kick. This week, I explored Raspberry Almond Muffins. Rather than attempting to mix in actual (fragile) raspberries into an otherwise sturdy dough, this calls for a teaspoon of raspberry jam in the center of the batter.

Raspberry Muffins

Previously, I’ve had all kinds of problems baking with jam in the center of dough: the jam sinks to the bottom, explodes/oozes out of the top, seriously sucks and pisses me off, etc. Fortunately this batter is sturdy enough for the jam, which transfuses itself through the muffin nicely during the baking process. After half of the batter is placed in each muffin cup, a small well is made inside for the jam to go into. This is very important, as the jam will move around when you spread the rest of the batter on top. For example, a couple of my wells weren’t deep enough and the jam was spread to one side and baked on that side. The muffins don’t look any different, but it took me a few bites before I found the fun, jammy center.

I know. It’s rough.

Raspberry Jam

After they came out of the oven, I jacked up the action by dipping the tops in melted butter, then a cinnamon sugar mixture.

Raspberry Almond Muffins with Cinnamon Sugar Topping
Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar, less 1 tablespoon
1 ounce almond paste, crumbled (3 tablespoons)
2 large eggs
1 1/3 cups plain low-fat yogurt
12 teaspoons raspberry jam
Vegetable cooking spray or additional unsalted butter for muffin tins

Cinnamon Sugar Topping
4 tablespoons butter, melted and warm
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon

Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl; set aside.

Beat butter, sugar, and almond paste with electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in one-half of dry ingredients. Beat in one-third of yogurt. Beat in remaining dry ingredients in two batches, alternating with yogurt, until incorporated.

Spray twelve-cup muffin tin with vegetable cooking spray or coat lightly with butter. Spoon one-half portion of batter into each muffin cup. With small spoon, make well in center of each cup of dough. Spoon 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons raspberry (or any flavored) jam into each well. Fill with remaining batter. Bake until muffins are golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Set on wire rack to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove muffins from tin.

For cinnamon sugar topping: Melt butter. Meanwhile, mix cinnamon and sugar for topping. Gently dip muffin tops into warm, melted butter, then into cinnamon sugar mixture. Serve warm.

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