Spiced pumpkin muffins made with fresh or canned pumpkin puree, soaked dates and warming spices. They are fluffy and moist and full of autumnal flavour, perfect for an afternoon treat on a cold and blustery day.
Pre heat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a muffin tray with muffin liners.
Slice the pumpkin in half, remove the seeds and roast for 30 minutes or until soft and slightly caramelised.
Meanwhile, roughly chop the dates and soak in 100ml of warm water, allowing them to slowly fall apart.
In a large bowl mix together the flour, bicarb of soda, cinnamon and ginger.
Melt the butter, brown sugar, and golden syrup over a low heat in a small pan.
Remove the roasted pumpkin from the oven, peel or slice off the skin and roughly slice up the flesh.
Use a hand blender or blending machine to blend the roast pumpkin into a puree.
Next add the melted butter and sugar mixture to the flour and spices mixture, followed by the soaked dates (including water) and the pumpkin puree.
Carefully mix and fold everything together until fully combined.
Next whisk up the egg and gradually add to the muffin mixture, stirring well between each addition.
Finally, spoon the muffin mix into the muffin liners. Leave a small gap at the top (½ cm) to allow the muffins to rise in the oven.
Bake at 180°C (350°F) for 30 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool
Flour: Use plain or all purpose flour.
Pumpkin: Use 1 small (1kg) fresh pumpkin/squash or 1 can of pumpkin puree.
Golden syrup: This is a UK based product and is best not substituted if it can be helped. If you can't find it in your local store you can easily make your own.
Bicarbonate of soda: This is the same as baking soda or sodium bicarbonate.
Spices: Ginger and cinnamon can be replaced or added to with nutmeg, cardamom, allspice or pumpkin pie spice.
Dates: optional. Work best if they are soaked in a little warm water before going into the mix.
How should the muffins be stored?Allow to fully cool then place in an air tight container. If you need to layer the muffins in the container, then place a paper towel between each layer. Muffins will keep well for 3-4 days.Can the muffins be frozen?Once baked allow to cool then either place in an air tight container or wrap in a double layer of cling film. Then freeze for up to 3 moths. To defrost leave on the side for a few hours or microwave in 30 second bursts until slightly warmed through.Do you have to use liners for muffins?Strictly speaking you don't have to use liners. You could just grease your muffin tray and pour the muffin mix straight into it.However, liners do make life so much easier. No greasing required and the muffins come out of tray without any difficulty. The liners also make the muffins easier to handle and serve and they will also help to keep them fresher for longer.