CONGRATULATIONS to Sarah from The Sugar Hit on her new book, The Sugar Hit!: Sweets That Pack a Punch. I have been a huge fan of Sarah’s for years and years, so it is so exciting to see her beautiful book, with its big, colorful photos and drool-worthy recipes. Every single one is fun, interesting, and begging to be baked. I want to also commend her for writing out the recipes in standard American cups and tablespoons, as well as in weight – that couldn’t have been easy. Sarah sent me a copy of her book to check out before it was released, and it was tough to flip through and just pick one thing to post (in truth, I’ve picked two, so the other will be posted later on). To start, though, I wanted to make these big crumb apple muffins, as Sarah states in the book that it’s her ode to New York City, and seeing as how I live here, I figured it only made sense for me to be the one to make them. Let me tell you, they live up to their name. I followed her instructions and made the muffins in a jumbo muffin tin, which I rarely do because I only have one pan, so I have to wait for one batch to finish baking before I can make another, but it was worth it. These muffins are the size of your face, with big, crunchy, cinnamon-y pieces of crumb topping to match. ‘Tis the season for apples and cinnamon. I know in Australia, where Sarah lives, it’s probably starting to get warmer while here in New York it’s just starting to cool off, but wherever you live, it’s always a good time for a big, NYC-style bakery muffin, isn’t it? So, once again, congratulations, Sarah! Be sure to pick up a copy of her book if you want to bake over-the-top, wonderfully delicious treats. I promise I was not paid or compensated to say this, either – it’s just the truth.
Dane and Rachel nervously cheers-ing (that’s a word) as we watched Kramer and Eric kayak out to their certain doom.
Muffins aside (although they are so big it’s kind of hard to do that), I realized I never shared these photos from our trip to Virginia beach last month. These are some of my favorites, as it shows my husband and my brother-in-law acting like dummies, and that’s always fun. One of the days we were at the beach, the weather was touch-and-go, so we went to the aquarium and grabbed some wings at a bar, but afterward, Kramer and Eric decided they wanted to take the kayak out into the ocean on a day when the water was definitely at its choppiest. Rachel (my sister-in-law AKA Kramer’s sister) and I weren’t super psyched about our husbands getting into a tiny kayak and paddling out into the water, but they adamant, so we grabbed some beers and headed out to watch them flip the kayak over a handful of times, struggling to stay upright and actually make any traction against wave after incoming wave. Obviously, they were fine and came back to shore, after which we headed back to the house to make margaritas and watch Broken Arrow, as you are wont to do after a big day of ‘yakin.
But nothing gold can stay.
Our heroes return to shore, beers in hand.
Make your crumb topping and set it aside.
Then make your batter.
And fold in your apples.
Divide your muffins among your tins and top with your crumb topping.
Bake until golden and set, then allow the muffins to cool a bit before serving.
These will keep well, covered and at room temperature, for up to two days.
- ¾ cup unsalted butter
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- ⅔ cup packed brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- raw sugar, for topping (optional)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup buttermilk or whole milk
- 2 apples, peeled and diced
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and/or line 12 large capacity ramekins or muffin tins (I mean the jumbo muffin tins, not the regular ones) and set aside.
- First, make your crumb topping. Melt your ¾ cup of unsalted butter in a small bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together your flour, sugars, cinnamon, and salt, then add in the melted butter. Use your hands to mix everything together until clumps form. Place the crumb topping in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Now make your batter. Whisk together your flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt and set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed. Add in your egg and beat to combine, again, scraping down the bowl as needed. Add in your vanilla and beat to combine. Add in your dry ingredients alternating with the milk, starting and ending with the dry mixture (so add in ⅓ of your flour mixture, ½ of your milk, another ⅓ of your flour, the rest of your milk, and then the rest of the flour). Fold in your diced apples.
- Scoop the batter into your prepared muffin tins, about ¼ cup of batter or so per muffin cup, and then generously top each muffin with your crumb mixture, squeezing big pieces of it together with your hands to form nice, big pieces. Sprinkle the tops with raw sugar if, you like.
- *Note: If you don't have large muffin tins and you want to use a regular sized tin, that's fine, but do not overfill your muffin cups! I do highly recommend making these big, though - they're much more impressive that way.
- Bake for 25 minutes or so, until golden and set. Allow these muffins to cool for 30 minutes or so before serving. These will keep well, covered and at room temperature, for up to 2 days.