Wednesday, February 20, 2013

carrot & apple cinnamon streusel muffins





I have to pass through the bakery in Wegmans every time I head to the deli to buy my favorite "Just Turkey" meat. The Just Turkey is used to create my favorite tortilla roll ups with slivers of sweet red peppers, cucumbers, sprouts and baby greens.  Just Turkey, the real name, is exactly what it implies...just turkey.  No additives, no salt, just like you shaved it off a turkey breast.  Since I buy it in small amounts every couple days to get it as fresh as possible, passing the bakery each time, I continued to spot a whole wheat carrot & apple muffin that was calling my name.






I usually don't buy baked goods, only because I obviously enjoy baking and creating my own, but I was so thankful I finally gave in.  This wasn't one of the huge bakery size muffins, it was a normal size, and the simple name just sounded appealing, and even healthy to me.  It had a streusel topping, but not a heavy, chunky, floury type.  It was a crumbly, light, cinnamon streusel.  The muffin was delightful!  On my following trip to Wegmans, I bought another one...this time to pull apart and examine!  :)  I had to figure out everything that went into this divine morning muffin, because I was now on a mission to make my own.  I did manage to eat my examination, it definitely did not go to waste!






My evaluation of the muffin revealed carrots, apples, currants, coconut and walnuts.  I already knew it was whole wheat flour from the name.  I stacked up my whole grains and muffin baking cookbooks, and began my search for something comparable that I could tweak with those ingredients.  I had a fabulous carrot cake recipe that I've been making for 30 years, so knew if all else failed, I could use that with modifications.

It didn't take me long to find an almost identical muffin from King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking cookbook. The popular Morning Glory Muffin popped right off the pages at me, full of all the good, healthy ingredients I was looking for.  The one I loved so much from Wegmans had all the ingredients chopped and grated very small, so that's exactly what I did for mine.  Theirs incorporated currants rather than raisins, so I followed suit.  With a couple modifications, I had my muffin!






The finished product...incredible, surpassing the muffin I was trying to emulate!  Moist, delicate, full of fruit, nuts and veggies, lightly sweetened, and the addition of the cinnamon streusel topping was perfection!

I have to admit, these muffins did not go to any of my taste testers, and weren't given away either.  I individually bagged each one and froze them all for myself!  When ready to have one, I just take it out of the freezer a couple hours ahead of time, and it's like a fresh baked muffin each time.  A bit selfish,  I know, but my Carrot & Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins were just too good.  Next batch, I'll share...promise!  ;)

Until next time...mangia!  xox

Carol






Carrot & Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins
Yield:  1 dozen muffins

Ingredients:

for the muffins:
1/2 cup zante currants
2 cups traditional whole wheat or white whole wheat flour
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups carrots, grated
1 large tart apple, peeled, cored, and grated (I used a Honey Crisp apple)
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/3 cup sunflower seeds or wheat germ (optional)
3 large eggs
2/3 cup canola oil
1/4 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

for the cinnamon streusel topping:
1/2 cup flour
4 tablespoons sugar
1 3/4 teaspoons cinnamon
4 tablespoons butter

Create the Carrot & Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.  Lightly grease a 12-cup muffin tin or line with cupcake papers and lightly coat the insides of the papers with nonstick spray. (See Carol's notes below.)

Put the currants in a small bowl and cover them with hot water; set aside to soak while you assemble the rest of the recipe.  Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, spices and salt in a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the carrots, apple, coconut and walnuts.  (Add sunflower seeds or wheat germ if using.  I did not use either.)  In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs, oil, orange juice and vanilla.  Add to the flour mixture, and stir until evenly moistened.  Drain the currants and stir them in.

Add all the streusel topping ingredients in a food processor or mini-prep processor.  Pulse until crumbly.  You can also use a fork or your fingers and "smoosh" all the ingredients together in a bowl until crumbly.  I used a Cuisinart mini prep processor, which works perfectly for this small amount.

Scoop the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tin or cupcake papers, leaving enough room to add the streusel topping. They'll be almost full, that's ok. (See Carol's notes below.)  Add 1 tablespoon of streusel topping to each muffin.  Bake the muffins until nicely domed and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 28 minutes.  Don't overbake.  Remove from the oven and allow the muffins to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove and finish cooling on a rack.

Carol's notes:

If interested - for the muffin cups I used Welcome Home Brands free standing pleated muffin cups.  They are a little larger than regular pan size muffins, so I made only 11 muffins, rather than 12 - and no pre-greasing or spray coating is necessary.  I filled them approximately 3/4 full, then added the streusel.  They are free standing, so I sat them on a rimmed cookie sheet in the oven to bake.  I purchased them at Wegmans, and also found them online at Amazon.  I love these things!  They have a great rustic, professional bakery look!  I also used the bread loaf pans in my Copycat Starbucks Gingerbread Loaf post found here.

If you don't like coconut, use drained crushed pineapple instead.

Bake a day ahead, they're even better the next day after all the good ingredients marry!

Recipe source:  King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking Cookbook (with slight modifications)




81 comments:

  1. I´m so glad you made these. I´ve been looking for a good morning glory since I made ones from a very well known bakery cookbook, but they fell short. This is just what I want to eat mid-morning! They are gorgeous Carol!

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    1. Paula, trust me...this one does not fall short! You will love them! Let me know what you think, when you have a chance to try them. PS: Loving your whole wheat bread!!!

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  2. These look so delish! I love the combo of carrot and apple. Nice!

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    1. Hi Jocelyn! The combo was truly made for one another...they are so good! Thanks so much for stopping by...enjoy the remainder of your week!

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  3. Hi Carol,

    Like you, I prefer home-baked rather than buying cakes from shops but sometimes, I must admit that the some bakeries can really market their baked goods very well... Funny that the muffins are calling your name... LOL!

    Great that you have found a similar recipe that work very well for you! HURRAY!

    Greetings from Australia and nice to know you via blogging. I'm now your latest follower and hope to hear from you too.

    Zoe

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    1. Hello Zoe! So very nice to meet you all the way from Australia! Isn't blogging amazing...how else would you ever meet someone with so many of the same interests?! Thank you so much for following acom...so appreciate it!!! PS: Your blog is wonderful!

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  4. Don't you just love trying to recreate something! It feels like your a contestant on a Food show. :D These muffins are so sweet-looking. I love anything with apples and, of course, streusel.

    Beautiful photos- I'm in love with your wrappers!

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    1. Val, as always, just like all your wonderful blog posts, you always make me laugh! Yes, I did feel like I was on a food show. I was actually ready to pull a Gramma Jordan (my grandmother), and begin adding a little of this, and a little of that...so glad I found a recipe so I wouldn't mess it up! xox

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  5. Beautiful muffins, Carol! I love a streusel topping :). I think one of these is just what I need to help with my Wednesday afternoon blues!

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    1. Hi Laura! So nice to see you stop by! I'm so sorry...I've eaten them all, but I will bake more and keep one just for your afternoon! xox

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  6. Carol, wow, these are amazing looking and as always your photography is just stunning. I mean, drop dead gorgeous I want to reach thru the screen! And I love streusel topping so much!

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    1. Thank you so very much for your kind words, Averie! So appreciated!!!

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  7. These sound so good, Carol! Beautiful pictures!

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  8. Carol, I'm sure the muffin is delicious, and I have been searching for a classic "morning glory" muffin and love the addition of the streusel topping. But muffins aside, your photography is mind-blowing! Seriously, it's a career in the making. Your photography is exceptional and I always, always look as forward to your photos as your recipes! Love it all!

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    1. Jeannie, you are so kind! Thank you so much! Thanks for stopping by! Love you!!! xox

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  9. Carol - what a beautiful muffin! You had me at the struesel topping. These are a must make. Lovely photos!!!

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    1. Good morning, Lisa! You and me both...just mention streusel...and I'm on it! Thank you for your sweet comment!!

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  10. I love carrot cake very much and this mixing carrot and apple seems very delicious to me!!

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    1. Elen, they are perfect together...they were made for each other! :) Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  11. i'm a huge fan of a hearty muffin, and this one looks anything but your average bland bran! i can't wait to try it! :)

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    1. Hi Marissa! Hearty describes this muffin perfectly! You'll have to let me know what you think when you have a chance to give it a try! Thank you so much for stopping by!

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  12. Carrot and apple? These could be my favorite muffin EVER!!! And with streusel??? YUM. And your photos are gorgeous...I could never make a brown food look so enticing :)

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    1. Good morning, Liz! You are so sweet...thank you so much for your kind comment!! Have a beautiful day!

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  13. Carol, these look absolutely PERFECT for a quick breakfast, which is usually all I have time for, and which I unfortunately remember to eat sometime closer to lunch! Such a wonderful combination of ingredients. Your photographs are, as always, gorgeous. Thanks for sharing :)

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    1. Hi Tracy! Thank you so much for your kind comment, and for stopping by! You will have to give these a try to be sure you get in an earlier breakfast! :) Enjoy your day!!!

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  14. Wow, love everything about these muffins Carol! You've included 2 of my favorites-apples and carrots-so I had to make an executive decision and pin them to my apple board, probably will go back later and add them to the carrot board too,lol;-)
    Hope you're having a wonderful week and thanks for sharing your tasty creation with us;-)

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    1. Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Patty! You're so funny!!! I'm glad you made an executive decision! lol Enjoy your upcoming weekend!!!

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  15. Perfection! Can't wait to give these a try. Gorgeous photos too. Thank you for posting.

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    1. Hi Donna! You will love these...so good and so easy to make, just a little prep time! Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to write your kind comment!

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  16. These are gorgeous, and I'll bet so much better than the one you bought! Love your photos too, Carol!!

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    1. Thanks so much for your kind comment, Meghan!! So appreciated! Have a great weekend!

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  17. So, now that you have your muffin...does the one at Wegmans still call out to to you?? Just wondering :) You did a great job Carol, these look amazing. Love all the good stuff going in and I love all things with streusel.

    Nazneen

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    1. Good morning, Nazneen! The truth? Yes, they still call out to me, but only because all 11 of mine are now gone! :) I've restrained myself, thus far, and will have to bake up another batch. Thanks for asking. lol Have a great TGIF!

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  18. I love carrot muffins and these sound fantastic! Can't wait to give them a try!

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    1. Thank you so much, Jessica!!! I'll trade one of my muffins, for one of your amazing peanut butter banana muffins! ;) Thanks for visiting!

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  19. Fabulous pictures - photography and styling. Cinnamon is so special isn't it?

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    1. It absolutely is, Tim! Thank you so very much for your kind comment! So appreciated!!!

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  20. These look so delicious! I love that they have some fruit and veg in them!

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    1. Thanks so much, Natalie!!! Have a beautiful Sunday!!!

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  21. Delicious muffins - full of flavor and goodness! You have a lovely blog and I'm very happy to follow you - great photos!
    Mary x

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    1. Good morning, Mary! Thanks so much for your kind words...and I'm honored to have you follow me!! Thank you!

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  22. Hellooooo morning! I would love to wake up to these every day!! Absolutely beautiful!
    The Morning Glory Muffins are my favorite - I make them all the time! :)

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    1. Hey Kate!! Love your happy greeting! These muffins absolutely are the best! Thanks so much for your kind comment! Have a beautiful Sunday!

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  23. Oh my goodness, Carol! I wish I had one of these right now to enjoy with my morning cup of coffee! I am always on the lookout for healthy, morning muffins. I am putting this on my must-try recipe list!

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    1. Thanks so much, Lisa! I wish I had one to share with you! :) Thanks so much for stopping by...and have a great Sunday!

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  24. These look wonderful and sound great!

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    1. Hi! Thank you for your kind comment, Susan!!! Thank you also for joining as a follower of a cup of mascarpone...very much appreciated!!! Enjoy your evening!

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  25. Oh Carol...these are beautiful! Apples and carrots together in a muffin sounds wonderful. And that streusel topping is just perfect! I wish I had a batch of these for breakfast throughout the week. You don't deliver, do you? ;- } On a side note...there is a Wegman's coming to the town next to mine soon! Love that store!

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    1. Good morning Anne! Yes, the apples and carrots are perfect together. I need a new batch! I've managed to go through them one by one out of the freezer over the past few weeks since making them! That's wonderful that you're getting a Wegmans. My Wegmans is only 2 miles from my house, so I frequent it quite often. My other two faves are Trader Joes and Whole Foods, but they're about 10 minutes away, and not as quick when I need something immediately. Thanks so much for stopping by, and enjoy your new Wegmans!

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  26. Stunning Stunning Stunning!!! Gah these pictures are amazing!!! And I'm now starving :)

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    1. Marina, WOW! Thank you, thank you!!! What a kind comment! Ok, me aside. I have your cookbook on pre-order...can't wait! Adore the video sneak peak with your precious daughters! Have a beautiful week!

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  27. Dear Carol! thank you so much for your lovely message and for watching my video... I 'd really love to meet other bloggers! Your pics are always so inspiring!
    thanks !
    Barbara

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    1. Ciao Barbara! My pleasure. It was wonderful. Since I won't be in Italy anytime soon, the video is the next best thing! Thank you for your comment and stopping by. By the way, I recently made your blueberry risotto, actually have made it many times, but this time photographed it for the blog. I'll be posting sometime in March. I'll be crediting you for the adaptation. It's so delicious! Enjoy today!

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  28. Beautiful muffins! And love the flavor profiles too, I've made a version of morning glory muffins as well, and loved them. I can certainly understand why you kept them all to yourself :)

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    1. Hi Laura! Thanks so much for visiting a cup of mascarpone, and for taking the "thyme" to leave your sweet comment! ;} Yes, I was a bit selfish with these muffins! Please stop by again - and have a great week!

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  29. You have said all the magic words... carrot, apple, cinnamon, streussel, muffins, etc. etc. I've always been a streusel fan, even when I was little, and I think I simply love every thing about these beauties! Including the adorable little muffin wrappers. Where do you find them? I certainly never see anything like that in my local stores...
    Simply beautiful!

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    1. Good morning, Kim! Thanks for your sweet comment...the muffins are VERY magical! ;} The muffin cups are the greatest! According to the manufacturer, different styles are available at a number of grocery stores. I've also purchased them from Amazon and Home Goods. They are fairly new and seem to be popping up in more locations. Thanks for visiting!!!

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  30. O my!! Those muffins look amazing! And the top is mouthwatering-)) Thank you for sharing, perfect breakfast.

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Yelena!! Enjoy your day!!!

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  31. These are so gorgeous Carol! They are loaded with so many good things that I love in a muffin! I don't have a Wegman's near me but am always hearing such great things about them.

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    1. Hi Reeni! Thank you so much for visiting, and your kind comment!!! Yes, the muffins are packed with lots of goodness! Wegmans is very nice, with fantastic customer service! Gotta love that! Enjoy your evening!

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  32. I love Wegman's too! These look amazing!!! I will have to try that turkey too!

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    1. Good morning, Sarah! Thanks for stopping by, and for your comment! The "just turkey" at Wegmans is wonderful...takes a couple times to get used to no salt in it, but then you'll love it! The texture is not like cold cuts, but just like a sliced turkey! Enjoy!

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  33. I just found out about your blog today and you've got such lovely pictures and recipes. I'm definitely going to stay tuned for more!

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    1. Hello, Irene! Thank you!! I'm so happy you found me, and came by for a visit! Please come back again soon!!!

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  34. These beautiful muffins are calling to me, Carol! It's funny, I just made muffins today and I used the same muffin papers - they are so pretty and your photos are stunning!

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    1. Thanks so much, Faith! I wish I could share one with you!!! I can't wait for your muffins in these papers. They are so nice, and bake up so beautifully in them! Have a wonderful weekend!!!

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  35. How I wish I had one of these muffins this morning, Carol. They look absolutely delicious, fluffy and moist! Fabulous!

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    1. So nice to have you stop by for a visit, Liren!! Thank you so much for the kind comment! Have a beautiful Sunday!

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  36. This is one beautiful muffin. That first photo is gorgeous as are all the rest. I haven't baked muffins in forever though they are my favorite along with my morning java.

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    1. Hi Shulie! How nice of you to stop by, and leave such kind words! Thank you so much! These muffins are definitely worth a try...to enjoy along with your morning java! {...my favorite way to enjoy them too!}

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  37. Delicious! From today on I will follow you back! :D

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    1. Thank you so much! Thrilled to have you following a cup of mascarpone! Have a beautiful weekend!

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  38. These muffins look gorgeous, love the combination of the apple and cinnamon :-)

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    1. Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Joy! They're one of my new favorites!!

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  39. OH man that streusel topping - you're killing me here! I so wish I had this for breakfast instead of my depressing toast.

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    1. Yes, toast would definitely be depressing instead of one of these muffins! :) Thanks, Chung-Ah!!!

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  40. Wow!!! (mouth is watered) yummy!!!

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  41. Hi Carol!
    I was really looking forward o making your muffin recipe (they look outstanding) when I realized that I needed orange juice... do you have any suggestions for substitutions? Thanks so much!

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    1. Hi! Thanks for the question...you are going to love these! Since I've only used orange juice, I can't really say how it would be with another citrus...possibly lemon? If you don't normally buy oj, just purchase a single orange or two which will yield 1/4 cup of the juice needed. Enjoy!!

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Hi! Thank you so much for stopping by a cup of mascarpone, and taking the time to leave a comment! I read, smile, and cherish each and every one of them! xox

Carol