Apple Muffins

The fresh, fragrant apples of fall are often celebrated in great apple pies, but here’s another way to enjoy them. This is one of the first recipes I pasted in the “Cakes & Muffins” section of my cookbook 15 or so years ago, having found it in a brochure from the New York Apple Association. It’s now on the association’s website, along with lots of other apple recipes, descriptions of the various apple varieties, and even a link to some apple cider recipes. And, apparently, they’re still printing those brochures.

This recipe was invented by elementary school students in North Syracuse, New York, according to the association. I’ve changed just a few details.

The Official New York State Apple Muffin
Makes 20-24

1/2 cup walnuts or pecans
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 Tbsp. melted butter

2 cups flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
2 cups chopped apples (2 large or 3 small)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup butter, melted
4 oz. cream cheese, cut into small pieces
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 375F degrees. Prepare topping by mixing all ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.

For the muffins, combine the first seven ingredients in a bowl. Combine the rest in a separate bowl, then add the dry ingredients a little at a time. Stir until just combined; do not over-mix.

Portion the batter into 24 paper-lined muffin cups and sprinkle with topping. (If you want big muffins that slightly overflow the edges, fill only 20 cups.)

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.