My kids love pureed sweet potatoes, so when I make them, I make a lot.  They’re great to have on hand for stirring into soup or chili, or making quesadillas (Spread some puree on a tortilla, top with blue cheese and red onion, fold in half, and toast in a dry skillet.  Voila:  lunch!), or as a sweet and nutritious addition to waffles, cornbread, or — when I run out of overripe bananas — muffins.

Tender, moist, and not too sweet, these muffins are an adaptation of my go-to banana bread.  I omitted the chopped chocolate from the original recipe and added a sprinkling of crunchy, cinnamon streusel.  Because they are egg-free, the muffins are light and delicate  — watery sweet potatoes may make them a little soggy.  If your potato puree seems loose or wet, you might want to strain some liquid out of it before baking.  To do this, line a fine mesh strainer with two paper towels and set it over a bowl.  Spoon in the puree, and let it sit for 10-20 minutes.

Sweet potato streusel muffins

Yield:  12 muffins

For muffins:

1 1/3 c. unbleached, all-purpose flour

2/3 c. white whole wheat flour

2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. fine sea salt

1 1/2 c. pureed, roasted sweet potatoes

1/2 c. light brown sugar

1/2 c. safflower or canola oil

1/2 c. chopped, toasted pecans or walnuts (optional)

For streusel:

1/4 c. granulated sugar

1/4 c. light brown sugar

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tbsp. cold butter

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Line a muffin tin with paper cups.  Lightly grease areas of pan between cups (so muffin tops and streusel won’t stick).

In a large mixing bowl, sift together flours, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.  In a separate bowl, whisk together pureed sweet potato, sugar, and oil.  Using a rubber spatula, fold sweet potato mixture into dry ingredients until just combined.  If using, fold in nuts.  Spoon batter into prepared cups.

To make streusel, work the cold butter into the sugars and cinnamon with your fingers until the mixture is the consistency of wet sand.  Crumble streusel evenly over batter.

Bake in center of oven, 22-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of muffin comes out clean.  Let cool briefly in pan, then remove to a wire rack.  Muffins will keep at room temperature for a few days.  I like to reheat leftovers  in the toaster oven, at 350 degrees for 5 minutes or so, until the tops are lightly browned.

Make it vegan: Substitute your favorite non-hydrogenated, vegetable shortening for the butter in the streusel.

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