Orange Chocolate Chip Muffins

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Category: Breakfast

Even if it didn’t boast such fantastic food, the Castle Marne Bed & Breakfast would still be impressive. The 1889 mansion in Denver’s Capitol Hill neighborhood is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and yes, it really does look like a castle. The place boasts 22-inch thick stone walls and a crenulated turret, while the interior exudes sophisticated Victorian charm.

Adding to the charm are the hosts – all three generations of them. Jim and Diane Peiker joined forces in 1989 with their daughter Melissa Feher-Peiker and her husband Louie Feher-Peiker to open Castle Marne as a bed and breakfast on the building’s 100th anniversary. Melissa and Louie now have three teenage children – the “castle kids” – who grew up helping out at the inn.

Breakfast in the castle’s Peacock Room (named after the peacock on its giant stained-glass window) often features several types of miniature muffins to sample. The orange chocolate chip muffins have been served from the day Castle Marne opened, and they’re a huge hit with both guests and the castle kids, Melissa said. “It’s our kids’ favorite,” she said. “They’d always ask, ‘Would you make some muffins for my class, mom?’”


Read the full story from the July/August 2012 issue of Colorado Life Magazine!

Number of Servings: 35-40 mini-muffins
Ingredients: 2 cups flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1½ tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup orange juice
1/4 cup orange liqueur
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chocolate chips
Directions: Spray or line mini-muffin tins to keep from sticking. In a large bowl, mix together flour, brown sugar, white sugar, baking powder and salt with a fork. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Put oil, orange juice, liqueur, egg and vanilla in the well and stir together. Continue stirring until the dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in chocolate chips. Fill muffin tins about 3/4 full. Bake at 400° for 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned and firm when lightly touched. Can be made without liqueur; just increase orange juice to 1/2 cup. Sprinkle muffin tops with sugar before baking for an added treat.