I've always loved dried apricots. One time I bought these dried apricots that had a recipe for muffins on the back of the bag. I tried the recipe and loved it! It combined the apricots with orange juice. Well, I love to add oranges to my baking. I took it a step further and added the rind to the dough mixture as well as to the orange icing that topped the muffins. After making the recipe a few times I have added several ingredients to make it my own. And now I make it in a bundt pan and call it a coffee cake. It's one of my husband's favorites. I also took this idea of apricots and oranges to my scone recipe. That's a good one too, but I'll save that recipe for another day. Here is the original-
APRICOT COFFEE CAKE/MUFFINS
1 cup chopped dried apricots
1 cup hot water
1 cup sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup ( 1 stick) butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
2 TBLS. orange zest (usually from 1 large or 2 small oranges)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 TBLS. fresh squeezed orange juice (fresh makes a big difference-just squeeze the oranges you used for the zest)
1/2 tsp. butter, softened
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Soak apricots in hot water for 10 mintues. Drain and set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter until fluffy. (I use my Kitchenaid mixer for this)
- Add sour cream and vanilla. Mix well.
- Add eggs one at a time and mix well.
- Sift dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda. Add to cream mixture. Mix just enough to combine.
- Gently stir in apricots, nuts, and half of the orange zest.
- Pour into greased bundt pan or muffin pan (12 regular size or 6 large).
- Bake coffee cake for 35 to 45 minutes until golden and toothpick inserted comes out clean. Muffins should bake 18 to 2o minutes depending on size.
- Make glaze by combining powdered sugar, butter,orange juice and rind.
- Remove cake/muffins from pan and let cool for 10 minutes. Make glaze and pour over warm cake/muffins.
- Glaze will set once cake/muffins are cooled.