It is hard to believe that in less than two months we’ll be packing up to head back to Umbria for the 2012 season but now that we have booked our flights and started to sort things we want to pack to take with us, it is a reality that is quickly approaching. One chore that I need to accomplish every year before we close up and head to Umbria is to empty out our freezer and pantry. Somehow I ended up with three packages of almond paste after Christmas that didn’t get used as planned, so I pulled out one package today to make these muffins.
The muffins are moist and rich with a subtle almond flavor and I added some sliced almonds on top before baking. The muffins turned out delicious, but after tasting them I think fresh raspberries folded into the batter before baking would be a great idea as well. When we are in Umbria, I bake casual rustic desserts like these muffins throughout the week for our farmhouse guests so I will be working on some new recipes like this one to take back with us over the next month or two. I really liked these muffins and will certainly make them again, but I will add either raspberries or blueberries to the batter next time so I’m including that option into the recipe.
Deborah Mele 2012
Almond paste adds a subtle almond flavor while yogurt helps to keep these muffins moist and delicious.
- 2 Cups All-purpose Flour
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 (7 Ounce) Almond Paste
- 1 Tablespoon Grated Lemon Zest
- 1 Teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (Or 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon & 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extracts)
- 1/2 Stick or 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, Melted
- 1 Cup Greek Yogurt (I Used Fat Free Fage Brand)
- 1 Large Egg
- 1 Heaping Cup Raspberries or Blueberries
- Spoon the batter
- Slivered Almonds
- Powdered Sugar
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Lightly grease 12 medium or 9 count large muffin tin or line with muffin papers.
- Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in one bowl.
- Use a box grater to grate the almond paste into the flour mixture, then use your finger tips to work it through.
- In a separate bowl, beat together the butter, yogurt, zest, extract, and egg until well blended.
- Add the dry ingredients and mix together just until mixed. (If adding berries, add at this time)
- Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and sprinkle the top with the slivered almonds.
- Bake for 18 to 20 minutes until light golden brown and set.
- Cool to room temperature, then lightly dust with powdered sugar before serving.
As I sit here reading this while drinking my morning coffee, all I want to do is reach in to my computer screen and take one – they look fabulous!
That recipe looks wonderful Is the yogurt a substitution for another ingredient, or a modern twist on an old favorite?
No, the recipe I had always had yogurt in it. I just always have fat free Fage on hand so I used that.
If I can’t find Greek yogurt I use regular, plain or berries and drain the yogurt in yogurt strainers overnight in the refrigerator. Works well for me. Deborah have you used these strainers?
Yes, I use strainers to make Yogurt Cheese. Greek yogurt is sold in almost every store lately so it shouldn’t be too hard to find.
I love the yummy classic muffins, but banana and almond must have cute aroma! The perfect treat for my girls – I think I’m going to make these this week. Thank you for the recipe!
I tried this recipe … and everyone LOVED the muffins. I made some plain, some with each kind of fruit … something to please the whole family.
I didn’t have Greek yogurt but made my own “yogurt cheese” by draining the liquid from regular plain yogurt by scooping it into a sieve lined with cheesecloth and resting it on top of a bowl to drain.
Question: Do they freeze well?
Francine, they freeze great! I just thawed a couple this morning from the freezer.
and how are you topping them in the picture? streusel? powdered sugar?
Can I substitute another flour for all purpose, such as almond flour. or rice? My son can only have Gluten free products. Thank You
I haven’t tried it, but a gluten free flour or coconut flour blend might work best.
Can I use almond marzipan instead of almond paste?
Marzipan is different than almond paste. They are not the same.
I made the recipe precisely as it says, but unfortunately the batter was too firm/hard. I added some liquids, but otherwise the flavor is fine