Almond Poppy Seed Muffins

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Just like last year, I’ve been on a baking spree to celebrate my birthday at the office. Only this time instead of cakes, I decided to make five different types of muffins as they are easy to eat and transport. While we were travelling through the US in September in an RV, we had muffins for breakfast almost every day as they are tasty, easy, and keep quite well (the store-bought ones anyway). I liked them all: banana nut, chocolate chocolate chip, apple cinnamon, blueberry, and almond poppy seed. You guessed it: this will be the first post in a series of five.

To break in the birthday present from my parents, a stand mixer, I decided to make one batch with the stand mixer. If you don’t have a stand mixer, melt the butter and allow it to cool. Whisk together dry ingredients and wet ingredients in separate bowls. Fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients.

An important thing to remember when making muffins is to not overmix the batter, and this applies to making them with or without using a stand mixer. It also helps to use paper liners and remove the muffins as soon as you can handle them (rather than allowing them to cool in the hot pan).

I found the recipe for Almond Poppy Seed Muffins on Cooking Classy. It delivers as promised: “a combination of just the right amount of sweetness and almond flavor and a perfectly tender crumb”. An interesting fact about poppy seeds is that they are called “maanzaad” (“moon seed”) in the Netherlands. Thanks for the recipe, Jaclyn!

Ingredients

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Makes 12 muffins

280 grams (1 3/4 cup) pastry flour or all-purpose flour

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

2 Tbsp poppy seeds

200 grams (1 cup) granulated sugar

140 grams (10 Tbsp) butter, softened

1 egg

1 egg yolk

2 1/4 tsp almond extract

120 ml (1/2 cup) whole milk

120 ml (1/2 cup) sour cream

20 grams (1/4 cup) slivered almonds

Preparation

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Preheat oven to 205C/400F.

Combine 140 grams butter and 200 grams sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Blend together butter and sugar on medium speed until pale and fluffy.

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Add in egg, egg yolk and 2 1/4 tsp almond extract and mix until blended.

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Combine 3/4 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp baking soda, 1/4 tsp salt and 2 Tbsp poppy seeds.

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Whisk until homogeneous.

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Measure out 120 ml milk and 120 ml sour cream.

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Whisk to mix.

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Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed until just combined.

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Add 1/2 of the milk mixture.

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Mix on low speed until just combined.

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Repeat with 1/3 of the flour mixture, the remaining 1/2 of the milk mixture and the final 1/3 of the flour mixture. Mix on low speed until just combined, do not overmix. Scrape the batter off the paddle.

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Line a muffin pan with 12 paper liners.

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Divide batter among them.

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Sprinkle slivered almonds evenly on top of the muffins.

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Bake at 205C/400F in preheated oven 16 – 18 minutes (if using fan, for static oven 20-22 minutes) until lightly golden and toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

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Allow to cool only briefly; remove from the pan as soon as you can handle them.

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Store in an airtight container.

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