A Little Tenderness. Also, Bourbon.

So. Today is the last day of this election season. Can I get an AMEN?

Feeling the need for a little warmth, tenderness, and comfort, I made muffins. And, because we all probably need it after these months of debate and verbal sparring, I added some Bourbon. And, because I thought it was a great idea to buy a bag of pears at Costco this weekend, they went into the mix as well. The pears and some chopped, candied ginger settled in to make jammy pockets that are quite lovely.

Go vote if you haven't already. Really it is a privilege. Do it! Go for a walk. Make these muffins. Then, depending on tonight results, grab some Champagne to celebrate, or more Bourbon if you feel otherwise.

Spiced Pear Muffins with Crumb Topping

For muffins:
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter softened to room temperature
2 eggs beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons Bourbon
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, freshly ground if you can
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup buttermilk, see note
2 medium pears, unpeeled, cored, and finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped candied or crystallized ginger

For crumb topping:
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup flour
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Place muffin cups in muffin tin and set aside. See note.

In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Whisk well to combine and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream together the sugars, and softened butter until it is blended well and slightly fluffy. About 3 minutes. Add eggs, vanilla, and Bourbon, and mix until well combined.

Alternate blending half the flour and half the milk into the butter mixture. Stir only until the flour is incorporated. Fold in the pears and candied ginger.

Divide the muffin batter between the muffin cups. Roughly 2/3rds of the way full.

In a medium mixing bowl combine the ingredients for the crumb topping. Use your fingers to cut the butter into the flour until a nice crumb texture is reached. Evenly distribute the crumb topping over the muffin batter.

Bake for 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let muffins cool in pan for 10 minutes then either turn each muffin on it's side in the tin or remove to a rack to cool completely.

The original recipe called for 1/2 cup milk. I switched this to buttermilk because it was all I had on hand. I found the batter to be very dry and stiff so I added an additional 1/4 cup. See what you think...

The recipe said it makes 1 dozen muffins, I got 16 muffins out of this batch.