Thanksgiving is right around the corner! But for some reason, when I went shopping this weekend, there weren't that many Thanksgiving things. At the grocery store, yes. Tons of stuffing, mashed potatoes, and etc. (Have you guys been to Costco lately? It is a bit overwhelming seeing extra-large boxes of stuffing mix piled high.) But at the mall and other retailers, it's all Christmas. Green and red. Not orange, yellow, red and brown. I guess people just mentally fast-forwarded to Christmas and forgot that Thanksgiving is staring at them right in the face.
Personally, I like both holidays equally. Thanksgiving is filled with food and Christmas with food and presents. And as far as I'm concerned, I don't have to go to school on either holiday. (yipee! time to sleep in!)
Oh! Another perk of Thanksgiving - fresh cranberries at the grocery store! Cranberries don't exactly taste the best by themselves. They're tart (or should I just cut to the chase and say that they're downright sour) and they aren't juicy. They're delicious in a sauce, but isn't that a bit cliche? Every year on Thanksgiving, and maybe Christmas, you eat cranberry sauce. Let's change things up a bit.
Enter the cranberry orange muffin. It's okay if cranberries are meh by themselves. Add some sugar, orange juice and zest and there you have it, ladies and gentlemen - one delicious cranberry-orange muffin. Perfect for a snack, breakfast, lunch, or dinner! (Okay, that was more of an advertisement jingle -forget the lunch or dinner part. I had to add the lunch or dinner part to make it sound more professional and TV-worthy, you know.)
Oooohhh... Did I mention the corn meal in this recipe? Don't be tempted to forgo it and add some other random flour. Use corn meal!!! It gives the whole muffin this amazing texture. Almost like its crunchy, like corn bread, but not exactly like cornbread. And while I'm at the don't-forget-this-and-that-ingredient-list, just remember to put in the cranberries (obviously). I just wanted to state the obvious.
Look down below for the recipe and Happy Thanksgiving!
Cranberry Orange Muffins
adapted from my former Home-Ec teacher's recipe
yields 12 muffins
1/4 cup oil
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup flour
1/2 cup corn meal
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup cranberries, rinsed
3/4 tsp. orange zest
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin, or line the cups with cupcake liners.
Mix the wet ingredients (oil, egg, and milk) together in a large bowl.
Mix the dry ingredients (flour, corn meal, baking soda, sugar, salt, cranberries, and zest) in a second bowl.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix. It's okay if there are some remaining lumps. Spoon batter into the muffin cups, making sure that all cups are equally filled.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.