Cranberry Upside Down Muffins: Cranberry Sauce:
1 1/2 cups (170 grams) fresh or frozen cranberries
3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar
1 tablespoon orange juice or water
1 tablespoon grated orange zest (outer orange skin of orange)
2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated white sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (240 ml) milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 tablespoons (57 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Cranberry Upside Down Muffins: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). Place rack in the middle of the oven. Butter well or spray, with a non stick vegetable spray, 12 muffin tins.
Cranberry Sauce: In a medium sized saucepan place the cranberries, sugar, orange juice (or water), and orange zest. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the sugar dissolves and the cranberries start to pop open, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly while you make the batter.
Muffin Batter: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, egg, vanilla extract, and melted and cooled butter.
Add the milk and egg mixture to the flour mixture. Stir just until combined. Do not over mix the batter or the muffins will be tough when baked.
Evenly divide the cranberry mixture among the 12 well greased muffins cups and then evenly spoon the batter over the cranberry sauce. Place in the oven and bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until very lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place on a wire rack to cool for about 2 minutes, and then invert them onto a cooling rack so the the cranberry topping is face up..
Makes 12 regular-sized muffins.
Cranberry Upside Down Muffins have a glistening red cranberry sauce sitting on top of a soft and fluffy white cake. Although made in individual-sized servings, these pretty muffins follow the basic concept of all upside down cakes, that is, fruit on the bottom and cake on top. Lovely warm from the oven.
Cranberry Upside Down Muffins start by cooking fresh cranberries with sugar, orange juice and zest to make a nicely flavored cranberry sauce. This sauce is not like the one we serve with Thanksgiving turkey. It is thick and syrupy, as it contains only one tablespoon of water. It is made this way so it won't seep into the cake batter during baking. Once made the sauce is evenly divided among the muffin tins and the next step is to make the cake batter. The batter follows the simple muffin batter principle of using just two bowls. One bowl for the dry ingredients and one bowl for the wet ingredients. No mixer is needed. The wet and dry ingredients are simply stirred together and then the batter is evenly placed on top of the cranberry sauce. Once the muffins are baked, they are inverted so you have the cranberry sauce on top with a lovely moist cake-like batter underneath.
These muffins are lovely warm from the oven and make a great brunch dish, especially during the holiday season when fresh cranberries are in season.