Monday, November 21, 2011

Mendocino Pumpkin Muffins

If you are not tired of all things pumpkin just yet, there is something more I would like to share with you. :)

My brother requests these muffins every year for his birthday (it's in June, mind you), and I'm always more than happy to oblige. They are adapted from a cookbook that has been on my mother's shelf for as long as I can remember.

The cookbook comes from a little restaurant called Cafe Beaujolais, which is nestled in the bohemian, coastal town of Mendocino, situated directly off Highway One in Northern California.

Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds was filmed on location here. Although, I try not to think of that when I visit, or I become frightened by every bird that flies overhead.... ;)

Mendocino's Blair House is also famous. It featured as the residence of Jessica Fletcher, the fictional sleuth from the hit 80's show, Murder She Wrote.

My family almost moved here shortly after I was born. Oh, how I would have loved to live in one of those quaint houses on the bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean!

We make frequent trips to the town when we stay in Fort Bragg (just 10 miles north). I love meandering the hiking trails along the bluff or browsing the myriad of galleries and shops. There are coffee shops aplenty, good for stopping in for a warm drink to ward off the chilly ocean breeze that blows through. A favorite stop is the Gallery Bookshop where there is guaranteed a purchase every time.

Pumpkin Muffins

2 c. brown sugar
1 c. canola oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 can (15 oz.) canned pumpkin (or 2 c. fresh)
3 1/2 c. flour
2 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
2 t. salt
1 t. nutmeg
1 t. allspice
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. cloves
2/3 c. water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Thoroughly mix together brown sugar, oil, eggs, and pumpkin. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon and cloves. Alternating with the water, add dry ingredients to wet in increments. (Batter should be creamy but not runny.)

Grease a muffin tin or fill with paper cups. Fill each cup about 2/3 full.

Bake 25-30 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out dry.


Anonymous said...

I had these for breakfast. That got me off to a great start!

Jan said...

When I was a kid my neighbor made pumpkin muffins. Her trademark was filling the muffin cup half full, placing a half walnut in the batter and then filling the rest of the muffing cup....a little surprise when you got to the center!! = ) Laurel...I love your writing!

Anonymous said...

Nice site. Just wanted to say that the exteriors of The Birds were filmed in Bodega and Bodega Bay, California, not Mendocino.

Anonymous said...

Also, the house you show as Blair House from Murder, She Wrote, isn't. It's most likely the MacCallum House Inn & Restaurant. Very pretty picture though!