After all, I walked up a very steep hill today.
I’ll climb the Matterhorn tomorrow if it means more muffins.
They are just muffins – mini-muffins, little two-biters, at that – but they are two eye-opening bites of very good chocolate. Even as an adult, chocolate in the morning always seems like a treat.
Like you are sneaking a treasure that was locked up for later.
Chocolate in the morning used to be a giddy entitlement; as in, it’s 9 am and mom and dad are out of town, so we should probably lick all the chocolate frosting off that Heinemann’s cake. And maybe two of Aunt Bobbi’s chocolate chip squares…a frozen Kit Kat…and some Hershey’s syrup from the bottle. Yeah, that’s a good breakfast.
The difference now seems to be that we’ve earned it – or at least the illusion that we’ve earned it.
Chocolate Breakfast Muffins
makes 12 full-sized muffins (or 24 minis)
2/3 cup (2 oz.) cocoa, Dutch-process or natural
1 3/4 cups (7 1/4 oz.) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups (10 oz.) light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup (6 oz.) chocolate chips
2 large eggs
1 cups (8 oz.) milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons vinegar
8 tablespoons (one 4-oz. stick) butter or margarine, melted
granulated sugar, for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 425 F.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together cocoa, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and chocolate chips. Set aside.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, and vinegar. Add this egg mixture, along with the melted butter, to the dry ingredients, stirring to blend until just well-combined.
Scoop the batter into 12 papered muffin cups (or 24 minis). Sprinkle with an even layer of granulated sugar. Bake muffins for 15-20 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Watch muffins closely – they can slightly burn around edges if overbaked. Remove the muffins from oven.
Allow to cool about 5 minutes in the pan, then remove to cool slightly on a wire rack before serving.
adapted from The King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion