Jack: How can you sit there, calmly eating muffins when we are in this horrible trouble, I can't make out. You seem to me to be perfectly heartless.
Algernon: Well, I can't eat muffins in an agitated manner. The butter would probably get on my cuffs. One should always eat muffins quite calmly. It is the only way to eat them.
- from The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde
I don't butter my muffins, so I don't have to worry about getting my cuffs greasy. And I hope this doesn't make me heartless, but I think muffins are always a good choice, regardless of whether I'm calm or agitated. Somehow they've acquired the guise of a quasi-healthy food, and I'm sticking with it.
This muffin recipe is a perfect example. The pears and chocolate chips add sweetness, but not as much as if I'd made cookies. I wouldn't eat cookies for breakfast (okay, I might, but I try not to make a habit of it) whereas eating muffins for breakfast - or snack, or dessert - seems perfectly legitimate. And while it's important to be earnest, it's even more important to eat your muffins with pleasure. In fact, it is the only way to eat them.
Pear Chocolate Chunk muffins
(adapted from The Jewish Week)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup sugar
1 – 2 firm, ripe pears, diced (to make 2/3 cup in total)
1 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chocolate chunks
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine oil and sugar in a medium bowl and mix well. Stir in the egg, and add diced pears and vanilla. Combine well. Stir in both flours, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon, and stir just until combined. Add chocolate chunks.
Divide the mixture between about 8 lined muffin cups. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool for five minutes and remove from the pan to cool completely.