This is my great-grandmother's recipe; my mom says that her mom used to make these muffins for them as a special treat on Christmas mornings. My grandmother used to have to grind her almonds into meal by hand. I guess if I had to do that we might only get them on Christmas as well. Thanks to modern technology we can have these anytime we want them.
You don’t have to worry about over mixing these muffins; the almond meal somehow retards the gluten development. It also helps to keep the muffins moist and adds the most wonderful flavor.
My Mom's Wonderful Muffins
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup sliced almonds
1-tablespoon baking powder
2 large eggs
1-tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2-cup vegetable oil
Preheat oven to 400°
Combine flour, sugar, almonds, baking powder, and salt in a food processor and process until the almonds are ground into a fine meal.
Add the eggs, milk, vanilla and oil; process for 20 to 30 seconds or until the mixture is well combined.
Spoon into paper lined muffin cups; drop several blueberries and pecan pieces on top of each muffin and poke them into the batter with your fingers.
Bake for 15 to 17 minutes.
Makes 1 1/2 dozen muffins.
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter
Cut in butter with a pastry cutter until the consistency of course cracker crumbs. Sprinkle mixture over muffins and bake as above.
Replace 1/2 the sugar with brown sugar and top with chocolate chips and bake as above.
Replace 1/2 the vanilla with strawberry extract and top with sliced strawberries, poke strawberries down into the batter with your finger and bake as above.
Increase sugar to 1-1/2 cups and add 3 ounces of melted baking chocolate; top with white chocolate chips and chopped pecans and bake as above.
In a saucepan over low heat melt 20 caramels with 3 tablespoons of milk, stir until smooth. Top muffins with chocolate chips, then spoon caramel sauce over the chips and top with chopped pecans. Bake as above.