Old-Fashioned Spiced Apple Streusel Muffins

You'll love the way the sour tang of Granny Smiths contrast with sweet raisins, brown sugar, and spices in these warm and homey muffins.

Makes 12 regular size muffins.

Streusel Topping:

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts

1 tablespoon cold butter


Apples:

1 1/4 cups Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped (about 2 small)

2 teaspoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons butter

1/4 teaspoon apple pie spice

1/4 cup coarsely chopped raisins


Muffins:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup light brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon apple pie spice

5 tablespoons melted butter

1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk

2 large eggs

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


1. Place rack in center of oven and preheat to 375 degrees F. Line a 12-mold regular size muffin pan with paper muffins cups.

2. To make the streusel, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, and walnuts. Cut cold butter into small pieces. Using your fingertips, rub butter into the mixture until a pebbly texture forms. Refrigerate while making the muffins.

3. For the apples: Put peeled apples in a small bowl, and douse with lemon juice. Toss to coat. In a medium skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 teaspoons butter. Add apples and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon apple pie spice. Add raisins. Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until apples are lightly browned and tender. Remove from heat.

4. For the muffins: Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 1 teaspoon apple pie spice in a large bowl and stir well.

5. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla extract; whisk well. Add to the flour mixture, stirring until just combined. Fold in the cooked apples.

6. Spoon the batter evenly into the into 12 muffin cups. Remove streusel from refrigerator, and sprinkle evenly over the top of the muffins. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack to cool for 5 minutes before removing each muffin and placing on a wire rack to cool.