On our way home from Fredericksburg we stopped by a roadside stand and bought some beautiful peaches and zucchini. We bought about a dozen and a half of the fuzzy blush fruit and on the way home I kept wondering what I was going to bake them into. Would it be a peach pie, a cobbler, a crumble, a crisp, ice cream???
Then I asked Mr. H what his thoughts were and he said I wasn't allowed to bake them because I'd "ruin them"! And he was very adamant about that too so I didn't bake them. Although everytime I sliced one up or walked by them and smelled their sweetness, I was tempted.
Then I remembered I had Fredericksburg Peach Preserves (ding! ding! ding!) so I used that along with the zucchini in these muffins and they were wonderful! The original recipe calls for canola oil and orange marmalade, but I used softened butter and peach preserves. They were still moist, tender, fragrant, and sweet, with little bonus pieces of peach from the preserves. They were really delicious and I liked the chew of the dried cherries. I would like to experiment with apricot jam and dried apricots too. Maria and Debby, I'm talking to you :-)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1/4 cup peach jam or preserves
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 zucchini (4 oz. total) shredded and drained on paper towels
- 1 cup dark raisins or dried sweet cherries
- 1/4 cup pecans or almonds, chopped (optional)
Preheat an oven to 400°F. Grease muffin cups with butter or butter-flavored nonstick cooking spray.
In a bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil, jam, vanilla and zucchini until blended. Add the flour mixture in three additions and beat just until evenly moistened and smooth. Stir in the raisins or cherries and nuts (if using) just until evenly distributed. The batter will be stiff.
Spoon the batter into the muffin cups, filling each no more than three-fourths full. Bake until the muffins are golden, dry and springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 (mine took 18) minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes. Unmold the muffins. Serve them warm or at room temperature, with butter and more jam.
Makes 10-12 muffins.
NOTE: I froze these after they were cool in a large Ziploc bag. I defrosted/warmed them in the microwave for 45 seconds and we were able to enjoy them throughout the week and they tasted just as fresh, if not better.
The original recipe calls for canola oil, but I used softened butter and it worked out just fine.