- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 2 1/3 cups light brown sugar, divided
- 4 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup plain yellow cornmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups chopped toasted pecans
- Vegetable cooking spray
- 4 1/2 teaspoons fresh orange juice
- 4 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- Turbinado sugar (optional)
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add 2 cups brown sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Beat in zest and vanilla.
Stir together 2 1/2 cups flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir pecans into batter. Divide batter evenly between 2 (12-cup) muffin pans coated with cooking spray.
Bake at 350° for 18 to 22 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Meanwhile, bring orange juice, lemon juice, and remaining 1/3 cup brown sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Boil until sugar is completely dissolved and syrup has thickened slightly (about 1 minute).
Pierce top of each muffin several times with a wooden pick, and brush warm syrup mixture over muffins. Sprinkle tops of muffins with turbinado sugar, if desired. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes.