It’s the great muffin bake-off, Charlie Brown!

11 Nov

It all began with one glorious bite of a Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin.  I sliced the muffin in half to save part for later (and ration my carb intake), but I couldn’t stop till the whole thing was gone.  Drat Starbucks and their vicious plot to infiltrate my diet!

But Romans 8:28 tells us that God can work all things for the good.  And so it is.

Now that Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin and I have gotten to know each other and daily contact is strictly forbidden, God has turned this bad sad thing something very, very good.  My one job at Thanksgiving the last few years has been to bring the rolls.  However, this year I’m going to be bringing Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins to the Thanksgiving table instead.

But since I am no baker, I’m going to need lots of help from those of you who are.  I have already begun my search on Twitter for the Ultimate Recipe.  From my Tweeps and a simple internet search, I’ve discovered a few different options:

1 – The “easy bake” kind that only involves a box of spice cake mix and a can of pumpkin.

2 – The more difficult untried from-scratch variety.

3 – The pumpkin bread turned muffin kind.

Option 1 appeals to me.  I confess my lazy heart yearns for the easy.  As Captain Barbossa says, “It calls to us.”  But what I had at Starbucks weren’t no spice cake muffin.  The more I examine that muffin, the more like pumpkin bread turned muffin it seems.  So here’s what I propose to do:

I have new neighbors across the street, and I have sweet-loving co-workers who are facing Black Friday in t-minus 14 days and counting.  (Yep, that’s right.  Gird your loins, people.  Gird your loins.)  So, I plan to test both Options 1 and 3, inserting a delightful helping of cream cheese into the middle of each muffin, and after tasting ONE of each, donate the rest to my deserving acquaintances.

So here’s what I need from you, my worthy reader —

1 – Recipe suggestions for the best Pumpkin Bread Ever.  I will need to convert the cooking temp and time for muffins, so I either need recipes that make the conversion or your expert baking comments to do such.

2 – I’m gonna make jumbo muffins, so I need a bargain on jumbo muffin pans.  Rachel Ray is nice, but $15/pan is a bit much.  Any shopping suggestions?

3 – Accountability.  Once they start baking and fill the house with the aroma of pumpkin luv, I need volunteers to babysit me to keep the muffins from spontaneously jumping out of the pan and into my mouth.  If you can’t make it over in person, written harrassment will suffice.

4 – Any other advice you feel is pertinent.

While it would be lovely yet completely unrealistic to be the hit of the Thanksgiving meal, I would be grateful if my creations could be half as yummy as Starbucks’.

Okay, now.  I’m off to the store to begin collecting ingredients for Option 1.  I’ll keep you posted how it all goes.  TTFN.

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