Monday, April 25, 2011

Dark Chocolate and Orange Muffins

The flavors of chocolate and orange really got popular with the chocolate orange balls over in the UK.  I know, most of you are not familiar with this candy. It is a big round piece of candy covered in foil that is compiled of segments made up of milk chocolate and flavored with orange oil.  The segments resemble the segments of oranges in appearance. In order to eat, you unwrap and tap the top onto a counter which causes the pieces to separate, just like the segments of an orange.

This flavor combination is not found in many American recipes, however, it was easy to find when looking through some food blogs in the UK. I made the choice to make muffins, since I had not made any in awhile.

To those of you that have the same standard breakfast every day, these muffins are a great way to add some variety. Also, these can be a sweet pick me up for an afternoon snack.   I find that they are the most tasty when warmed and served with butter.

Note that the muffins, since they have chocolate in them, have a tendency to stick.  It is best not to use paper liners.  Make sure you grease your pans well. To make things even easier, line the bottom of each holder with a parchment round.  Grease the side of the parchment that faces up.

Dark Chocolate and Orange Muffins
courtesy of I love milk and cookies blog

1 cup plain yogurt
2 tbs orange juice
2 eggs (room temp)
1/4 cup butter (room temp)
1 tbs orange zest
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 3/4 cup of flour
1 cup chopped dark chocolate or chips

Grease inside and top edge of muffin holders of 12 holder pan. Cut parchment rounds to go in bottom of holders, place inside each muffin cavity and grease top side of parchment. Preheat oven to 355 degrees.

In a large bowl, sift together the baking powder, flour and sugar.  Stir in the orange zest.  If you are using fresh zest, take care that all is evenly distributed and not lumped together.  Zest from a spice jar will mix easier, but may not impart the same flavor as fresh.  Then add the chocolate, stirring until blended. Set aside.

Then place all the wet ingredients (butter, yogurt,eggs, juice) in a small bowl and beat on low for 1 minute. Batter will still be lumpy with some chunks of butter, but that is okay.

Fold the wet batter into the flour mixture by using a wooden spoon. Once no dry areas remain in the batter, spoon it into the muffin holders.  The batter should be evenly divided among the twelve.  Since muffins do not rise like cupcakes, the 12 cavities will be very full of batter.  Transfer to oven and bake for 30-40 minutes or until tester comes out clean.

Remove muffin pan from oven and let cool for 2 minutes. Then remove each muffin and place on rack to finish cooling.  Serve warm with butter.