Best High Definition Muffin Mix (For Dinosaurs)?
April 10, 2016 3:36 PM   Subscribe

I am the proud owner of a cast iron dinosaur muffin tin. This awesome one. I love making muffins in it. Some muffin recipes are 'higher definition' than others, however. By which I mean, some muffins more clearly display the dino details. What are some delicious muffin recipes that will also do a good job of showing off these magnificent megafauna?

I've already discovered that nuts are dicey. If they wind up on the bottom they mar the otherwise pristine dino edifice I've baked. Berries are similarly problematic, but if added after the mix is already in the pan this can be mitigated.

Please help.

Dino Eater
posted by sp160n to Food & Drink (9 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
Smitten Kitchen's corniest corn muffins are delicious. They are extra good if you spray the muffin pans well and then slightly overbake, as they get a slightly crisp outer layer that way. They are also fabulous if you sprinkle some cheese on top and then broil them. Or serve with a mixture of salted butter & honey. Can't go wrong.

The corn kernels are delicious and make them healthier, but they do tend to sink and end up at the bottom of the moulds, so consider omitting them for the dinosaurs' sakes... or, better yet... Maybe consider filling in the bottoms with a thin layer of un-corned batter and pre-baking them til that sets up, just to make sure you get maximum dino perfection, and then add the kernels to the remainder of the batter, fill up, and complete the baking.

This technique should work for a lot of muffin additives.
It's more time, but obviously worth it for perfect dinosaurs.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 3:45 PM on April 10, 2016 [5 favorites]

Do you know about Baker's Joy Baking Spray?. It's a super easy way to grease complicated pans when it would be tough to get grease into all the little nooks and crannies.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 3:50 PM on April 10, 2016

I second corn muffins.

Baker's Joy is basically oil and flour, and you can do the same thing by really spraying the pan with regular Pam and then sifting some flour into the dinos, then dumping out the extra flour. Coverage is key. Also, letting them sit after cooking for a while helps. Just turn the pan over and they should fall right out.

I just ordered that pan on Ebay, thanks!
posted by Huck500 at 5:08 PM on April 10, 2016

I second the Pam and flour method... unless you're making something chocolate. Then use cocoa instead of flour.
posted by Marky at 5:25 PM on April 10, 2016

I asked a similar question, back in the day. Pound cake, not muffins, seems to be the way to go for details.
posted by anastasiav at 5:26 PM on April 10, 2016 [3 favorites]

I make tiny pound cakes (I call them ounce cakes) in muffin pans all the time, and get very sharp details of the inside of the muffin pan. Here's the best pound cake recipe.

For excellent detail & ease of removal completely coat the inside of the dinosaurs with a thick layer of butter, then put a half spoon full of flour in every dinosaur and shake the pan around until every inside surface is covered in flour. Bang the pan on the counter-top a few times, and this will release excess flour. Dump the excess flour.
posted by gregr at 6:43 PM on April 10, 2016 [3 favorites]

Madelines, maybe? They're usually baked in little fluted molds, and you can definitely see those ridges on the final cakes. mmmmmmmm ... little lemon-flavored genoise dinosaurs ...
posted by mon-ma-tron at 7:19 PM on April 10, 2016 [1 favorite]

Whatever you make, using high gluten flour (bread flour, or buy gluten to add in) will help. I found some at a health food store and its 1 tsp to normal flour to make the equivalent of bread flour. It will help hold the shape.

Bob's Red Mill 10-grain hot cereal mix has a muffin recipe on the back. It might take a little tweaking to make them sturdy (yogurt instead of milk, bread flour) but the shell comes out smooth and shiny. (And they're super yummy.)
posted by jrobin276 at 11:40 PM on April 10, 2016

If you want something really different, you can't beat Impossible Pumpkin Pie.

It worked really well with my Piellennium Falcon.
posted by Katemonkey at 7:43 AM on April 11, 2016

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