Muffintalk is when you get together with foodie friends and your conversation is all about food, its flavors, types, ingredients, you name it, much to the boredom of someone who gravitates to conversation over sports, or motorcycles, or the book they are reading or what happened last week on Survivor. This blog is mostly about vegetarian cookery and recipes using your CSA veggies, but every once in a year I feel the need to post a muffin recipe. After all, a blog named muffintalk should include some literal muffin talk, especially when vegetables are one of the ingredients.
The actor Jim Davis who played Jock Ewing on Dallas was once quoted, “Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread and pumpkin pie.” That’s Mr. Davis’ idea, not mine, though you can find recipes for all three in my cookbook, Chocolate Snowball. These muffins appear in Chocolate Snowball as Chocolate Zucchini Bread. As with most breakfast quick breads, you can bake the batter in muffin tins instead of a loaf pan.
1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups grated zucchini
3/4 cup plus 1/4 cup sliced almonds
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 12 muffin cups with paper cupcake liners, or coat the tins with melted butter and dust lightly with flour, or spray generously with cooking spray.
With an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Mix in the oil and vanilla extract.
Sift the flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to the cream cheese mixture, blending well. Mix in the zucchini, 3/4 cup of the almonds and the chocolate morsels. Divide batter among the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup of almonds. Bake 25 to 35 minutes, until the tops of the muffins spring back when touched with a finger or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool about 5 minutes, then remove from the tins.
Makes 12 muffins.