Monday, 13 October 2014


I can't remember a time when I'd actually eaten pumpkin (Pumpkas as the kiddies used to call them!) so with Halloween around the corner I
thought it would be a perfect time to give some a whirl. With the success of my Christmas muffins I thought I'd give them a trick or treaters twist and give them a more spooky slant. This time I'm frosting my muffins for a sweet treat and adding some delicious pumpkin spice to really make them pop. Your little ghosts and ghouls won't be able to resist. 

It's a shame that pumpkins aren't so readily available all year round, well in the UK anyway. That doesn't mean you can't replicate these muffins all year round. Replacing the pumpkin with butternut squash will also make a similarly scrummy muffin and you can get hold of them a lot more easily. 

Pumpkin spice mix can be readily found on line (I have used Steenbergs pumpkin spice mix and its really delicious - as our their other spice mixes, go check them out.). If you don't have the time or the money to be sourcing ingredients on line and can't find any in the stores then mix together a tsp each of cinnamon, all spice, nutmeg and ground ginger for a very close replication to the flavour. If you don't want to frost your muffins either you could sprinkle over a mix of your spice mix with the same amount of light brown sugar over each before baking for a caramely sweet kick.

Follow the recipe below for 12 muffins, a really spooktacular treat this Halloween.

Pumpka-Spice Muffins

200g Pumpkin
300g Self Raising Flour
4 Tbsp Pumpkin Spice 
1 Tsp Baking Powder
Soft Light Brown Sugar
250ml Sunflower Oil
4 Whole Eggs
200g Cream Cheese
125g Soft Butter
50g Icing Sugar

  1. Chop your pumpkin into small cubes and place in a pan of boiling water. Boil the cubes for around 10 minutes until mashable. Drain and then mash into a smooth puree. Leave to one side to cool.
  2. Whilst the pumpkin puree cools turn your oven on too 180 degrees (160 fan).
  3. Place the flour, 2 tbsp of pumpkin spice, baking powder and brown sugar into a bowl and mix together.
  4. Once its cool, add the pumpkin puree into another bowl with the oil and egg and whisk until well combined.
  5. Create a well in the spiced flour and slowly tip in the milky pumpkin liquid, mixing as you go until just combined. Try not to over beat the mixture as this makes for bad muffin action.
  6. Grease the 12 holes of your muffin tins and divide the muffin batter between them. Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes until browned and a skewer comes out all nice and clean when inserted. 
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack before preparing your frosting.
  8. Once the cupcakes are cool, beat together the cream cheese, butter, icing sugar and 1 tbsp pumpkin spice until combined and fluffy. Don't over beat or your frosting will be too runny. 
  9. Pipe the frosting over the muffins and then sprinkle over the remaining pumpkin spice for a final flourish.
12 muffins all ready to go. 

Stick them on a plate by your door ready to hand out to any trick or treaters or have them ready for when your little goblins come back exhausted from terrorising the neighbour hood. Remember though Halloween isn't just for the kids. Make sure you snatch the best muffin for yourself before dishing the out.

A trick on everyone else but defiantly the best treat for you!


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