Triple Chocolate Cranberry Muffins and Tate’s Bake Shop Cookie & Bar Tower Giveaway
For the past month, I had received a preview copy of Tate’s Bake Shop Cookbook: Baking for Friends by Kathleen King, from Ms. King’s team. (If you can recall, I visited this charming bakery that has many delicious baked goods in Southampton, Long Island last year).
The book has many wonderful color photographs that would make me want to break out my mixer and start baking. The recipes are in the Hamptons style of not being too fussy, yet the details of each recipe makes it unique from slight twists on a chocolate pear tea bread to cookies named after the last hurricane that came up here, Hurricane Irene cookies.
Since I was stuck at home since Hurricane Sandy is coming over to New York City, I ended up baking a different version of the white chocolate cranberry bread. Instead of melting the white chocolate, I kept my chocolate in chunks and find whatever chocolates I had in my pantry (the idea is to get a variation of chocolate flavors), used a mix of dried and frozen cranberries for some texture differences, and instead of butter and flouring my muffin tins, I buttered and sugared it for a subtle caramelized sugary crust on the outside.
When I shared this with my family, they were enamored. They can’t stop eating them, even though we were about to have dinner a few hours away! The crumb texture is pretty dense (like a muffin should be), tart from the cranberries but inherently nutty from the hazelnuts, and the various chocolates were a surprise in every bite. (The recipe is toward the end of this post).
The kind people of Tate’s Bake Shop were gracious to let me host a giveaway of their Cookie & Bar Tower (more info of this set on their site; retail $48)! It’s an assortment of three 7-oz boxes of cookies (chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin and white chocolate chip macadamia nut); two raspberry bars, two chocolate chip and walnut blondies, and two rich, dense and fudgy plain brownies.
In order to participate in this giveaway, please comment with a valid e-mail address (so I can contact you if you win) on this post what is your favorite item from Tate’s Bake Shop. If you Follow me on Twitter (link) and tweet about this contest, please add a separate comment for that. If you Like Tate’s Bake Shop on Facebook (link, a separate of that, too please. Winner will be chosen at random.
The giveaway will end on Sunday, November 12, 2012 at 12:00 PM EST and the products will be shipped to any address within the U.S. (no P.O. Boxes) directly from Tate’s. Good luck!
Update: Congratulations Anita for winning Tate’s delicious Cookie & Bar Tower! Thank you all participants for entering this contest.
Tripe Chocolate Cranberry Muffins
Adapted from Tate’s Bake Shop Cookbook: Baking for Friends by Kathleen King
Makes 20 standard sized muffins
Softened butter and sugar for the muffin pans
6 ounces (or 1 cup) various chocolates, chopped to a medium or small chunks (you may use all of one type)
2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup buttermilk
Grated zest of 1 orange
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (not thawed or chopped)
1 cup toasted, skinned hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
1. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly butter and sugar two muffin pans and tap out excess sugar.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. In either a large mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, place the butter and sugar and beat at a high speed (for the stand mixer, it should be with a flat beater attachment) for about 3 minutes, until it’s light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the buttermilk, orange zest, and vanilla extract. Scrape down the bowl when needed.
3. Set the mixer at a lower speed, add the flour mixture and beat until just incorporated. Stir in the nuts, cranberries, and chocolates. Using a small ice cream scoop, to divide evenly the batter, and scoop the batter to the muffin pans.
4. Bake until a bamboo skewer or toothpick inserted at the center of the muffin comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes since this cake is denser than a traditional muffin. Let cool on a wire cooling rack for 10 minutes, remove muffins from the pans, and serve.