Apple-Squash Muffins

This week, as we once again open the book of Shemos, we learn about the enslavement of the Israelites in Egypt and their subsequent miraculous redemption.  The Sages teach that it was in the merit of our righteous foremothers of that generation that the nation was redeemed from Egypt.
One of the strengths of the Jewish woman is the fortitude and courage to continue on in dark times.  The Sages teach that the women in Egypt would be intimate with their husbands when their husbands were worn out from a day of crushing labor, and in this way, they would birth the next generation of Klal Yisrael.  As the verse notes, תַּחַת הַתַּפּוּחַ, עוֹרַרְתִּיךָ – “Under the apple tree I awakened you” (Shir HaShirim 8:5).  (See Rashi to Ex.38:8)

Here is a super moist and delicious apple-squash muffin, in honor of Sefer Shemos and the courageous women of Klal Yisrael throughout the generations.  Many thanks to my sister-in-law for the inspiration for this recipe.

Apple Squash Muffins

Pre-heat oven to 350*.  In a large bowl, mix together:

4 jars (4oz each) baby food squash, scant ¾ c. brown sugar, ½ c. sugar, ¼ c. oil, ¾ c. natural applesauce, 2 tsp. vanilla extract, 4 eggs

Add dry ingredients to the bowl: 2 c. white whole wheat flour, 1 Tbsp. baking powder, dash salt, 3/4 tsp. cinnamon.

Mix all together.  Gently fold in 1 & 1/2 gala apples, peeled and diced.
Spoon batter into disposable foil muffin tins.  Bake 25-30 minutes, till cake tester comes out dry.  Cool muffins in the tins on wire racks.

**Due to their low oil content and high fruit content, these muffins will stick to paper muffin liners.  It is recommended that you bake these in foil (disposable) muffin tins only.
**For breakfast (or snack muffins) fill muffins cups almost to the top.  This will yield about 20 muffins.  For side dish muffins, fill muffin cups only halfway.  This will yield about 26 smaller muffins.  For smaller muffins, decrease baking time to about 20 minutes.
**You may omit the diced apple for a lovely squash muffin that makes a great side dish.

**The squash flavor is very mild.  Kids love these muffins as well.
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