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by on July 23rd, 2011

Raspberry Chocolate Muffins

Raspberries and Chocolate a match made in Heaven.

What is it we crave when we are happy, sad, tired, excited or just about any emotional state we may find ourselves in — CHOCOLATE.

Why do we have chocolate up on a pedestal and why is chocolate (besides roses) is probably the number one seller on Valentine’s Day. I think chocolate does something to our brain chemistry that gives us an euphoric high. So, I say, let’s keep eating it.

Chocolate can be molded into a lot of different shapes like rabbits, eggs, Santas, hearts, chocolate coins and just about anything you can think of can be made into a chocolate shape.

Chocolate does have some health benefits after all. They are full of flavonoids which act as antioxidants. Did you know that dark chocolate contains 8 times the number of antioxidants as strawberries have. Flavonoids also relaxes the blood pressure and helps to balance certain hormones in our bodies. Now if that isn’t enough reason to have a few pieces today, I don’t know what is.

I think we crave chocolate because our bodies are telling us to have fun, relax and enjoy life. Are are last words going to be “I’m glad I didn’t have that bite of double chocolate cheesecake today?”  I don’t think so.

I love having treats in my freeze so when my kids are home or someone drops in I have something sweet and delicious to offer them. These muffins are great for breakfast/brunch, a snack, dessert, or for a husband with a sweet tooth looking through the freezer for something he can eat. This muffin is so good, I think you could frost it and call it a cupcake.

I know I’m not a hoarder and I don’t think I’m too obsessive. BUT, when I saw these raspberries on sale at Krogers a few weeks ago for $1.00 a carton I bought two flats (24 cartons) and came home and put them up in the freezer and then went back the next day and bought 24 more. I think I am pretty stocked up with berries. Now, I’m just waiting for the peaches.

Zest of two oranges is pretty fast when you have a microplane zester.

I throw the berries into the mixer for a few seconds to just break them up.

I love my colored cupcake papers. I buy them from Etsy’s.

Raspberry Chocolate Muffins

2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. orange zest
1/2 c. milk
2 c. raspberries

Melt the chocolate chips and set aside. With an electric mixer, beat the softened butter with the sugar until pale and fluffy.  Fold in the melted chocolate.  Add the vanilla and orange zest.  Mix in dry ingredients in two additions, alternating with the milk. Fold in the raspberries.

Spoon into greased muffin tins and bake at 375° for 25 to 30 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans.

A little chocolate frosting could be added to top if you are wanting something a little more sweet.

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