Pumpkin Chai Muffins

For our most recent designer run (the rehearsal run that the designers and show staff attend to see the show before we move into tech) I made two types of muffins.  One of the cast members is a vegan and our director is following a gluten-free diet so I decided to try out a Bittersweet recipe.  I did not know where to get persimmons, so I substituted pumpkin instead and altered a few other things.  They came out looking amazing, something you would find at a corner coffee shop along side espressos and lattes.  The crumbly muffins were excellent paired with tea or coffee, the spice gave them a little kick and were savory more than sweets.  Here’s the recipe:

Pumpkin Chai Muffins

1 Cup Pumpkin Puree
3 Tablespoons Canola Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
1/3 Cup Light Brown Sugar, Packed
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
2 Cups Soy Flour (or All Purpose for non-gluten-free)
1/2 Cup Chopped Hazelnuts
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Instant Coffee Powder
1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
3/4 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
Pinch Salt

6 Teaspoons Granulated Sugar, for Topping

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, oil, vinegar, brown sugar, and vanilla until smooth.  In a separate bowl mix the flour, hazelnuts, baking soda, coffee, spices, and salt.  Combine the wet ingredients into the dry, stir.  Don’t thoroughly stir, just until a few lumps remain.

Distribute the batter in greased muffin tins and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake for 15-20 minutes. Let cool in the pan for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.  Then enjoy!