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Clarisa’s Kitchen

Muffin Better Than This

Everyone knows the week after syllabus week is the absolute worst. Our once empty winter break schedules (or lack of schedules) were rudely interrupted by classes last week. This week, the real work begins.  Nevertheless, I, an emotional baker, somehow managed to fit in a copious amount of baking (obviously). To cope with the start of classes, I conquered double chocolate muffins. How can anyone expect to make it through the beginning of the semester without a little chocolate in life? I found the recipe on lifemadesimplebakes.com.

The recipe calls for:

  • ¾ c. brown sugar, packed
  • ⅓ c. vegetable oil or melted coconut oil
  • 6 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 6 tbsp. HOT water
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1⅔ c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¾ c. sour cream or Greek yogurt, heaping
  • 1⅓ c. semisweet chocolate chips, divided (or a mix of regular and mini)

How to make it

  • Preheat oven to 400
  • In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the sugar and oil.
  • Combine the cocoa and the hot water in a small bowl, whisk until a smooth paste forms.
  • Add to the sugar and oil
  • Add the eggs and vanilla, mix until combined.
  • In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • Gradually alternate adding the dry ingredients and the sour cream to the large mixing bowl. DO NOT OVER-MIX.
  • Fold in 1 cup of the chocolate chip with a spatula.
  • Using a large scoop, fill each liner (I use a #20 scoop which as approximately 3.5 tbsp.).
  • Sprinkle the remaining ⅓ cup of chocolate chips on top and gently press into the batter.
  • Place in the oven to bake for 7 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and continue baking for 10-12 more minutes.
  • The cracks should look slightly moist and the edges should be firm.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Everything was going smoothly until I got to the bit about the vanilla extract. Not only did we not have any, but the entire floor I live on plus a few others were also fresh out. After much extensive research, I was able to add a hefty load of Aunt Jemima syrup to the mix as a vanilla extract substitute. In addition to the vanilla substitute, I opted for the greek yogurt instead of the sour cream mostly due to a personal preference. The mere thought of sour cream going into a chocolatey, sweet muffin honestly scrambled my mind and caused some slight discomfort. I’m sure many of you will understand why. For those of you who question the choice, be sure to let me know how your muffins come out if you decide to go for the sour cream.

The muffins came out beautifully. I half expected the garnished chocolate chips on the top to melt away and drip down the sides while in the oven. If you think like me, do not fret, young bakers! The chocolate chips did indeed stay where they were placed (thank god).

I think I have only been blessed to eat one other double chocolate muffin in my lifetime, so I didn’t exactly know what to expect flavor wise. In my experience, muffins are not as sweet as cupcakes. Earlier on in the year, I made chocolate cupcakes. I added significantly more sugar than the recipe called for (no surprise there) and these double chocolate muffins definitely won the sweet prize. I’m not sure how this is true considering there is more cocoa powder (for those of you who don’t know, cocoa powder is generally very bitter) and less sugar. Oh well. I’ve always thought of muffins to be more of a breakfast treat, but these muffins are so darn good and chocolatey that 705 (my apartment) and all those who stop by have managed to scarf down about 26 muffins (about two batches) in three days.

Be sure to try out this recipe and join in on the chocolate addict’s club! A few of these bad boys will surely send you into a muffin coma for a bit.

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