If you were an avid reader of Gourmet Magazine in 1981, as I was, you undoubtably made these Morning Glory Muffins. Or, if you were like me, you made these muffins over and over again for many years…perhaps for a decade or more. These muffins had a cult following. Everyone I knew made them, and if they didn’t, all it took was for them to sample one, and they were off and running. You couldn’t go to brunch or afternoon tea without seeing these muffins on the table. We were having a love affair with these muffins in the 80s. I suppose we over did it, because they seemed to disappear after that. Oh sure, I thought about them now and then, but I was afraid to start making them again. I actually couldn’t find the recipe in my files and considered this a sign from above. If I started, would I be able to stop? Would it be another decade of Morning Glory Muffin mania? My older metabolism just couldn’t take it! I refrained until one day, I came upon the recipe inadvertently on the internet, and I knew I was soon to be hooked all over again. I tried hard to resist. I thought about them night and day. I just had to make them again one more time! I wanted to share them with you all (a likely excuse). I remained strong for several months.
Then the perfect reason for making these muffins presented itself. My 10 year old granddaughter was coming for a visit and she loves to cook and bake as much as I do. I could introduce her to this wonderful recipe, and then, after I’ve had one or two (or three), I can send the rest home to her family. I can see a renaissance happening for these muffins as a new generation delights in these moist, dense with flavor little cakes, full of nature’s bounty. I’m not one to pass up a golden opportunity, so she and I shared a delightful morning in my kitchen preparing these muffins for their comeback. We worked diligently shredding and chopping and stirring until we produced the flavor that I remember so well. Can it possibly be close to thirty years since I made these muffins??? It feels (and tastes) like yesterday.
I have to thank Chef Pam McKinstry who created these muffins in 1978 for her very popular restaurant on Nantucket Island. It was then published in Gourmet Magazine in 1981. The rest is history. I’d love to know if you remember these muffins and if you ever made them for your friends and family.
RECIPE: makes 18 muffins
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
1 TBSP. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
3/4 cup golden raisons
1 large apple, peeled and grated ( I like Granny Smith)
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
2 cups grated carrots
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts
3 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1. Position rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.
2. Sift and whisk together the sugar, flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt into a large bowl. Add the coconut, raisons, apple, pineapple, carrots and nuts and stir well to combine.
3. In a separate bowl (or bowl of a standing electric mixer), whisk the eggs with the oil and vanilla. Add the dry ingredient to this and blend well.
4. Spoon the batter into muffin tins lined with muffin cups, filling each to the brim.
5. Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool muffins in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to finish cooling.