Thursday, June 21, 2007
Wow! These are good. While I was making these, I started thinking about all the cherry desserts I love - Cherry Garcia ice cream (my fave!), cherry cobbler, cherry pie, cherries just by themselves... so many good ones!
I got the inspiration for these from Annie on the nest but then I used my own recipe which I just tweaked a bit. Decided it would be better to use ingredients I already had than to run to the grocery store! If the recipe sounds familiar (!) it's because I used the recipe for my double-chocolate banana and double-chocolate strawberry breads; used cherries for the fruit and cut the cooking time to suit the muffin-sized pans.
Here they are. I made 12 good-sized muffins with this recipe.
Chocolate Cherry Muffins
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil or apple sauce
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup chopped fresh cherries (the original recipe called for 2/3 cup dried cherries if you'd prefer to use those)
1 cup chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet)
1. If you are using fresh cherries, you will want to start by washing and drying them and then chopping them up. It's a bit of a bugger to cut them because of those pesky cherry pits... An easy way to do it is to pretend the cherry is a miniature avocado - take a knife and cut from the top to the bottom of the cherry (cut through to the pit) and all the way around (I would describe it as cutting from the north pole to the south - OK, so I'm an elementary school teacher/I have odd ways of describing things!). Wiggle the two halves of the cherry apart then use your knife (careful!) or a finger to remove the pit. The nice thing about this recipe is that it doesn't matter what the cherries look like since you can't see them amongst all the chocolate! Chop the cherries up into whatever sized pieces you'd like.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with cupcake papers or use cooking spray to grease the muffin pan "holes" (can't think of the name of those things!)
3. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, eggs, and oil at medium speed until mixed. Beat in the vanilla.
4. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa, and baking soda; beat into the sugar/egg mixture at low speed until it is just combined. Stir in the cherries and chocolate chips. I highly recommend using a wooden spoon or a rubber/silicone spatula to mix in the chips and fruit.
5. Spoon the batter into the lined/greased muffin pan. Bake 15-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the muffins comes out clean (I usually test it on the two muffins in the center of the pan). Cool them for 10 minutes in the pan then cool completely on a wire rack.
I'm thinking these would be wonderful with a scoop of Cherry Garcia ice cream.. :) I tried it.. they were wonderful with a scoop of Cherry Garcia. Ok, ok, I confess, I used generic "Cherry Garcia" (!) they were still good. RIP Jerry!!
The original recipe can be found at: Annie's Eats.