As temperatures cool down and days get shorter, there’s nothing like a homemade treat for feeling warm and cozy. Throughout fall and early winter, fresh grapes from California are in season and make a pleasing addition to muffins and breads. Their luscious colours — red, green and black — add a wow factor that keeps family and friends coming back for more. To use fresh grapes in baking, consider the following:
Do a quick swap. Instead of the usual berries in a muffin or bread recipe, add some grapes. Leave them whole and fold them in when the directions call for adding berries. Grapes keep their shape during baking and deliver a sweet and juicy surprise.
Build on a classic flavour combination. Fans of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches will fall in love with the way that California grapes add pop to this delicious peanut butter muffin. Enjoy them for breakfast or give them as a gift to say thanks, welcome or happy holidays. Wrap in brown parchment and tie with ribbon or raffia for a country kitchen look.
PB and G Muffins
Makes: 12 muffins
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 14-16 minutes
• 2 cups (240g) flour
• 1/2 tsp (2g) salt
• 1 1/2 tsp (7g) baking powder
• 1/2 cup (100g) sugar
• 1/2 cup (120g) butter, melted
• 1/2 cup (120g) crunchy peanut butter
• 2 eggs
• 1 cup (250ml) milk
• 1 cup (168g) California seedless grapes
• 1/4 cup grape jelly (60ml), stirred
1. Heat oven to 350⁰ F. Line muffin tin with 12 paper muffin cups. Sift together the flour, salt and baking powder.
2. In another bowl, add sugar, melted butter, peanut butter and eggs and mix until well combined. Stir in the dry ingredients and the milk until evenly moistened. Do not overmix; batter will be slightly lumpy.
3. Fold in grapes. Spoon batter into the prepared muffins cups and top with a teaspoon of grape jelly. Bake in preheated oven until muffins are golden brown, 14 to 16 minutes. Cool before serving.
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