Strawberry Shortcake Donut Muffins


I have been dying to try out this recipe for about two weeks now. Finally, unable to stand it much longer and wanting to make Aaron something yummy for the 4th of July, I gave in and made some of these UH-MAZ-ING muffins! A surprising twist to an ingredient I have used many times took this recipe to the next level. 

Want to know more? Read on and I will tell you!
Browned Butter! Who knew?!


I had never browned butter before and it really made all the difference.  Once the muffins were done baking, they just hung out on the rack while I prepared the next part of their journey to being delicious. 


Sorry about the blurry picture, but we all know what muffins cooling on a rack look like, so I don't feel too bad :) 

Onto the next part of the recipe: Cinnamon Sugar. Yes, that's right. Those little crunchy, grainy flecks you saw in the very first picture were nothing more than plain old cinnamon sugar. 


Well, folks! Time for dunkin' some donut muffins. (Get it? Dunkin' Donuts...this is what happens when I spend all day in the kitchen by myself.)  Here is one happy donut muffin swimming in the sugar bath. 


Once it got to this point, it was really a matter of dunking the muffin in butter and then rolling it in the sugar bowl, and off to join the rest of its mates on the rack.  It was torture waiting to try one out—they look too enticing to be left alone! 





With all the muffins done, the final step was to pipe some frosting over the muffins, add some strawberry slices, and speak in muffled tones while you try to stuff your face.  Thanks to Kevin & Amanda's recipe—one of my favorite blogs—we had a yummy treat for the 4th of July! 


And now, what you have all been waiting for.  The Recipe! 

Ingredients:


12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 cups (13.5 oz) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk


Method:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a mini-muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. Beat the butter and sugar for 5 minutes until soft, fluffy and lighter in color. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until just mixed in. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir a fourth of the dry ingredients into the batter. Then stir in a third of the milk mixture. Continue mixing in the remaining dry and wet ingredients alternately, ending with the dry. Mix until well combined and batter is smooth, but be careful not to overmix. Fill muffin tins with 1.5 tablespoons of batter (about 3/4ths full). Bake at 350 for 14-15 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.

Brown Butter Cinnamon Sugar Crust


12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) butter
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Melt the butter until it starts to bubble and then foam. When it starts to foam, whisk constantly for 1-2 minutes until it turns brown and you see brown flecks at the bottom of the pan. Immediately remove from heat and pour into a bowl for dipping. Combine the sugar and cinnamon. When the muffins are just cool enough to handle, remove from the tin and dip them on all sides into the melted butter then roll in the cinnamon sugar.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting


6 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pint strawberries, sliced and cut in half
Place the butter, sugar, milk and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. If necessary, add more milk, one tablespoon at a time, beating for 1-2 minutes after each addition until desired consistency is reached. Pipe onto muffins and top with sliced strawberries.

Makes 18-20 mini muffins.


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