Cherries in winter

Monday, January 28, 2013


January's a time for healthy eating.  Looking back over the past month, I've posted two recipes for salad and one for soup.  We've loved them all.

But I think it's time I posted something sweet again.  There's nothing better than fruit desserts in the middle of winter.  These muffins would be wonderful made with fresh cherries in August, but I think they're even better made with frozen cherries in January, when we really need their burst of vitamin C and their joyous sweet/tart flavour.

At times like this, I'm reminded of why I freeze fruit in the warm weather.  It's such a treat to reach into my freezer and pull out a bag of blueberries, raspberries or cherries ready to be baked into something sweet, and to take me back to the summer.

"Oh, my orchard!  After the dark, stormy autumn and the cold winter, there you are again, young, new full of happiness, the heavenly angels have not forsaken you."

- from The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekhov



Cherry Muffins
(from King Arthur Flour)

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup milk
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups cherries, pitted, coarsely chopped, and drained (either fresh or frozen)
1 cup slivered almonds, lightly toasted
1 tsp almond extract
granulated sugar for sprinkling

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.  Beat in eggs, one at a time.

Combine dry ingredients and add them to butter/sugar mixture alternately with milk.  Stir in almond extract, then gently fold in almonds and cherries.

Spoon muffin batter into 12 muffin cups (either greased or lined with paper liners).  Cups will be quite full.  Sprinkle each muffin with a little granulated sugar.  Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until muffins test done.



37 comments:

Patty said...

I agree January is the time for healthy eating- it just feels right!! But we bakers need to do our baking and I think your cherry muffins would really hit the spot right now ;-)

Bonnie said...

Beth, What perfect timing. This weekend I was craving something with cherries. I even thought of making a cherry pie. I might make these for school on George Washington's birthday. Bonnie

Gloria said...

Beth these look absolutely yumm!

Natalie Aguirre said...

I agree with Gloria. Yum!

Valerie said...

Love everything about this post.
Hurray for the return of the sweets! :D

Lizzy Do said...

Oh, you are lucky to have a stash of frozen cherries! These muffins look terrific, Beth!

Food Gal said...

Frozen and dried berries are such a godsend. In fact, I'm about to grab some frozen blueberries to whip up a batch of muffins. ;)

Claudia said...

I just mentioned that I was ready for a fruit dessert. (Great minds....?) I do love the combination of cherries and almonds but probably won't see a cherry for awhile. But I want this - maybe loaded with berries...

Belinda said...

Does eating a pound of M&Ms count as healthy? I should be eating this!!

bakewithjill.com said...

These sound fantastic, and I love King Arthur's recipes. I've got some blueberries in the freezer, and I think of last summer every time I pull out that bag to toss some into my oatmeal.

amy (fearless homemaker) said...

I love fruit muffins and these look fantastic! I adore treats like this, both in the summer + winter.

Kitchen Riffs said...

I've read very little Chekhov; I should remedy that. And I should definitely consider freezing fruit in season so I can make something like this when the weather turns wintry. Love the flavors of this! And it's simple to make, too. Man certainly can't live on soup and salad alone. ;-) Good stuff - thanks.

yummychunklet said...

These cherry muffins sound great. I'm still trying to get into the swing of healthy eating myself!

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Beth, Cherry Muffins in wintertime sound like such a treat! We use a lot of so-called "sour cherries" for baking and we used to have a sour-cherry tree in our garden that we adored. Nowadays you can find them frozen in some stores and I still love them in my baking - I am sure that your recipe would work very well with those too!
Have a great Tuesday!

Angie's Recipes said...

I love my muffins loaded with fruit! These must be really wonderful with fresh cherries.

Barbara said...

We love those fresh cherries, Beth. I made some Valentine hearts with them recently....have some left, so I'll try these. Looks delicious!

Jess said...

Yummy! I really need to freeze more fruit to enjoy throughout the year. My hubby is going low-carb lately and that's put a damper on my baking...but I might just have to make a batch of muffins and hide them somewhere to munch on when he's not looking ;)

Kittie Howard said...

I'm drooling! Cherries are my absolute favorite, with blueberries second. And, my apologies for not e-mailing just yet but we're in the throes of finalizing our trip. The glitch is the return date. I think this trip has gotten legs of its own, LOL!

Guru Uru said...

I could eat anything with cherries, frozen cherries, fresh cherries - thank you for this recipe :D

Cheers
Choc Chip Uru

Beth said...

No problem, Kittie. I'm looking forward to hearing about your trip whenever you're ready!

Jemi Fraser said...

Yummy! I only ever remember to freeze blueberries in the summer. I'll have to do better than that!

Chocolate Shavings said...

Re-visiting summer's fruit in the wintertime is that much more of a treat!

Medeia Sharif said...

I don't think I've ever had the pleasure of eating cherry muffins. I'd sure like to try them.

Monet said...

Freezing berries in the summer makes the winter all the brighter. Thank you for transporting me with your pictures! I hope you are having a lovely week. Stay warm, eat well, and enjoy the weekend!

Joanne said...

One of these days I'm going to have the forethought to freeze berries in the summer. These muffins look fabulous! Cherries are my favorites. :)

Katerina said...

King Arthur Flour has the best recipes when it comes to baking! These muffins are perfect Beth!

Cucina49 said...

Ooh, those look delicious! I've been cooking about 80% good, 20% treats this month--one can't be good all the time.

grace said...

that crackly sugar topping looks great! i will always welcome your savory posts, but the sweet ones are my favorite. :)

Jenn Kendall said...

such gorgeous muffins! i love the idea of freezing berries during the summer, i am definitely doing that this year!

Gina Stanley said...

Usually I would have a bag of cherries in the freezer waiting for something this wonderful to be made, but I'm out at the moment. Will have to freeze more next year, because there is nothing better than a fresh fruit muffin.
-Gina-

Kathy said...

Oh Beth, My mouth is watering for your beautiful muffins! I love the way the cherries are just oozing out…luscious!

Lorraine said...

Good morning Beth! I made a batch of these muffins yesterday and they are delicious! Just had one for breakfast and packed one for my husbands snack in work. Thanks for sharing!

Beth said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed them, Lorraine! We loved them too.

Cindy said...

These look delicious--I want one right now!

Lorraine said...

Hi Beth. I just posted this muffin recipe you shared with a link back to you :)
http://gratefulprayerthankfulheart.blogspot.com/2013/02/cherry-muffins.html

Beth said...

Thanks, Lorraine! I'll be right over to check it out.

Sue said...

These sound delicious, especially with the almond extract!

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