Schrödinger’S Pumpkin Muffins
The Jazz Chef
Aren’t pumpkin muffins culinarily “dead” after the holidays? We eat and eat and eat the omnipresent orange squash from Halloween to New Years. By January, aren’t we on to something better?
Not yet. Straight from the pumpkin muffin multiverse come these beauties, named for Erwin Schrödinger, the physicist who figured out that time has multiple threads. So, while pumpkin pureé might be passé in one thread of time, in the Jazz Chef universe, we ignore the lame latté spice combo of ginger, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg and boldly riff where no chef has gone before for a whole new breakfast or snack treat!
What tops the unique-o-meter is tossing in nigella seeds are still relatively new to a lot of North American home chefs. They have a kind of nutty, peppery, very slightly cuminesque thing going for them. They’re popular in Indian and Asian cooking. Here, teamed up with a little grated dried grated orange peel, they offer some nice pop and crunch that humdrum poppy seeds do not, and the flavors of the nigella and the pumpkin create harmonies and contrasts all in one wonderful bite!
Monoflour muffins are mundane. Multiflour provides lots of “notes” in the texture. Coconut flour gives us some fiber and provides a nutty compliment to the pumpkin to nix the nutmeg. Spelt flour softens up the dough a bit. Flaxseed gives it nice richness, and a nice shot of Omega-3s which we need.
Aromatics? We’ve got ’em! Saigon cinnamon and Heilala vanilla which, with all due respect to our friends in Madagascar, Tahiti, or Mexico, is so amazingly good that it should be classified CONFIDENTIAL. It has the most round vanilla notes and it plugs into the pumpkin like an AMPEG amplifier on Roger Waters’ guitar. A little hazelnut oil and a tiny taste of toasted pumpkin oil are the rich.
One thing new here that you should not be afraid of: Panela, real brown sugar from Columbia that is cooked into blocks. Just grate off the edge into a bowl and you are rewarded with some of the best brown sugar out there. If you sub out muscovado or coconut sugar, just add about 33% more.
The Dry Stuff:
340g (1 cup) “00″ Bread Flour
170g (.5cup) spelt flour
85g (.25cup) all purpose flour
85g (.25cup) coconut flour
85g (.25cup) ground flaxseed
21.5g (1.5 tbsp) baking powder
128g Panela Columbian Brown Sugar – Grated or Muscovado Sugar
192g Organic Sugar
4.2g (1 tsp) salt
4.2g (1 tsp) Saigon cinnamon, ground
2.1g (.5 tsp) ground clove
8.4g (2 tsp) dried orange peel
4.2g (1 tsp) Nigella seeds
The Wet Stuff:
3 Vital Farms pasture raised eggs
236ml (1 c) Native Forest Lite Coconut milk
295 (1.5c) Whole Foods Organic canned pumpkin puree
59ml (.25cup) Hazelnut oil
59ml (.25cup) Avocado oil
5ml (1 tsp) Toasted pumpkin seed oil
5ml (t tsp) Heilala Tahitian Vanilla
Pepitas for topping (Approx 70g(.5cup)
- Preheat the oven to 177°c/350°F
- Get out a large muffin pan (12 pots).
- Grate the panela sugar using a grater over a large bowl OR, if you don’t like exercise, break off a chunk and toss it into your food processor. Add to the dry ingredients bowl.
- Integrate the wet ingredients together in a mixing bowl or a large measuring cup. Set aside
- Integrate the dry ingredients. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture.
- Pour the wet mix into the dry mix and turn gently until everything is integrated. Do not overstir!
- Spoon the mix to the top of the muffin base for average-sized muffin pans, 1/2 of the cup for deep muffin pans or tins.
- Place into the oven and cook for 35-45 minutes. They are done when a bamboo skewer stuck in one comes out clean.Remove from the oven and let them cool on a rack.
Let cool 10-12 minutes before removing from the muffin tin, and either serve warm or let cool fully before wrapping them in cling wrap and putting them up.