I am so ready for fall!  Now, I know y’all are saying to yourselves, “Ha, Santa Barbara fall must be about 60 degrees!”  Well, okay, you’re right.  But I’ll take what I can get.

I love that golden, fall light that shines gently down on the trees and only happens at dusk.  I love wearing sweaters and boots on those crisp mornings (I know, I know… we don’t have crisp mornings but I’m a wimp so I wear fall clothes when it’s about 65 degrees out).  I love Sunday bake day when football is on and I’m dancing around the kitchen to Ray LaMontagne or Pink Martini or Amy Winehouse.  I’m so ready for fall.

To inspire fall to come more quickly, or maybe just to make myself feel like it’s fall, I decided to bake cinnamon apple muffins.  They’re warm, comfy, and perfect for a chilly autumn morning.

Give them a go and will fall to descend upon us!

Cinnamon Apple Muffins (recipe care of addapinch.com)

Cinnamon Apple Muffins.jpg

INGREDIENTS:  2 cups all-purpose flour (+ 2 teaspoons for coating apples), 1½ teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (+ ½ teaspoon for coating apples), 2 cups diced apples, ½ cup unsalted butter (room temperature), 1 cup granulated sugar, 2 large eggs, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract, ½ cup milk
For the Topping:  ½ cup butter (melted), ¼ cup granulated sugar, ¼ cup ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 375º F. Spray muffin tins with bakers spray or coat well with shortening or butter and flour, making sure to discard any excess flour from the tins after coating.  Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Set aside.  Toss together diced apples and 2 teaspoons of flour to coat apples in a separate bowl. Set aside.  Cream together butter and sugar until lightened in color, about 3 minutes. Add an egg, one at a time, taking care to fully incorporate before adding the other. Mix in vanilla.  Gently fold in flour mixture, alternating with milk. Stir until just combined. Fold in diced apples and scoop mixture into prepared muffin tins, filling about ⅔ to ¾ full. Bake until a toothpick or skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
Prepare topping for muffins while the muffins are baking by melting the butter and allowing to cool slightly. Pour butter into a separate bowl sized easy for dipping tops of muffins. Mix together granulated sugar and cinnamon in a separate bowl and set aside.
Once muffins have baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly in the muffin tin. Then, remove each muffin and dip first into the melted butter and then into the cinnamon sugar mixture. Place onto a plate to finish cooling.

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