I am on my maternity leave at present. My parents were here for the first 2 months with the baby and it has now been close to a month of three of us managing by ourselves. While there have been rare days with the baby fussing and crying and dishes pilling up in the sink; in general we are managing great - spending majority of the time cuddling and playing with our little girl, eating very simple home-made food everyday, resting whenever we can and housekeeping and cleaning as time permits.
Life is setting into a rhythm. I make fresh dinner daily and the leftover dinner serves as my lunch the next day - works great for me as I get to spend the whole morning with my little bundle without worrying about lunch logistics. My little girl naps in the afternoon. After her nap I take her out to a stroll nearby; then we come home, she plays in her baby gym while I take a quick coffee break (gotta have caffeine!). Then we play together some more; spend time in the backyard counting guavas and playing peek-a-boo :) After another quick nap, its time for making dinner! We got a wonderful rocker chair as a gift from a friend and it has proven so very useful! I place my little girl in the rocker in kitchen and start working away preparing dinner. I keep talking to her about every little thing I am doing like asking her what to make, chopping veggies, sauteing etc.. I am pretty sure she cares not much about our dinner menu or the recipe, but neverthless she keeps looking at me trying to babble away making conversation as I cook... its our together time making food memories -- and needless to say it makes preparing dinner time just that much extra special for me :)
Anyway, coming back to today's recipe! I had some leftover pumpkin puree in a can which I wanted to use up one day. I was thinking of making my usual pumpkin kheer but instead thought why not make some pumpkin muffins - they would serve great as my coffee snack for next few days. Thus a little Googling later, this recipe came about. Its mostly a derivation of the banana muffin recipe I had posted earlier. The muffins were awesome - and I'll be sure to make them again next fall when fresh pumpkins are in season.
Recipe: Pumpkin cranberry muffins
Makes 9 large muffins or 12 small ones
1C pumpkin puree (canned or made from freshly roasted sugar pie pumpkins)
3Tbsp melted butter
2Tbsp canola or vegetable oil
1.5C AP flour
handful of dried cranberries
2tsp vanilla extract
1 egg beaten
1.5tsp baking soda
pinch of nutmeg
3 pods of cardamom - powdered
- Preheat oven to 360F
- Mix the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamom. Set aside.
- Add melted butter and oil to the pumpkin puree. Mix well.
- Add beaten egg to the puree and mix well.
- Add vanilla extract, cranberries and rest of the dry ingredients to wet ingredients.
- Mix lightly until every bit of the mixture is thoroughly coated.
- Line a muffin pan with muffin wrappers.
- Pour a couple of spoonful of batter until each muffin wrapper is almost full.
- Top off with a couple of cranberries to each of the muffin slots (purely for decoration!)
- Bake for 30mins until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack. Enjoy!