Yes, I’m giving you sugary goodness two posts in a row. The cold weather has addled my brain… I’ll make up for it next week. For now, we’re going to make seriously fabulous Cranberry Pumpkin Muffins using homemade Cranberry Pumpkin Sauce and homemade Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting. The Cranberry Pumpkin Sauce is delicious on its own… Half-Pint calls it “Pie Sauce” and will clean up his toys for a dish of this as a reward. The Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting, well, if you just eat it with graham crackers or a spoon, who am I to judge? Let’s get started!
1 cup Cranberry Pumpkin Sauce (see below)
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Step 1) Whisk together first five ingredients in a large bowl.
Step 2) Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
Step 3) Line a muffin tin with foil liners, and fill liners halfway with batter.
Step 4) Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 18 – 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Step 5) Allow to cool, then frost with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting (see below).
1 pie pumpkin, approximately 6 – 7 inches in diameter (or, substitute a butternut squash)
8 ounces cranberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
Step 1) Cut pumpkin in half and scoop out seeds. Place pumpkin halves cut side down on a greased baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 90 minutes. Remove from oven, then proceed to the next step.
Step 2) While the pumpkin cools, cook cranberries, water, and sugar in a in a large pot over medium heat until cranberries pop open. Remove from heat. Stir in cinnamon.
Step 3) Use a spoon to scoop the pumpkin flesh away from the skins. Add pumpkin flesh to the cranberry sauce, and puree with an immersion blender. Save 1 cup of sauce for the muffin recipe; eat or freeze the rest!
Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting
In a medium mixing bowl, combine 1 (8 ounce) package of softened cream cheese, 3 tablespoons of softened butter, 3 tablespoons milk, 4 cups of powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Blend with an electric mixer until well combined. If frosting feels too thick, add another tablespoon of milk.