Sarahbeth happened to post this recipe on her new blog and fortunately enough I had all the ingredients at hand, except for the pastry flour which my local supermarket doesn't carry anyway. I swapped it with All Purpose flour and Cake flour and I think it worked out fine.
That same day I brought the muffins to a potluck and everyone told me how much they loved the muffins. Since I loved them as well, I am going to post the recipe here for you.
They are different from regular pumpkin muffins, less sweet, with a lot of pumpkin flavor - absolutely wonderful.
Makes 12 to 14 muffins
Bakers Note: If you use generous scoops of batter, the yield will be 12 muffins. For smaller muffins, use 7 muffin cups in each of 2 muffin pans. Distribute the batter in a random pattern (not in rows) in each pan so the muffins bake evenly. Butter only the cups that you are going to use, or the butter in the empty cups will burn.
Softened unsalted butter, for the pan
3 2/3 cups/500 g pastry flour, sifted (could be replaced with 250 g cake flour and 250 g all purpose flour)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) / 115 g unsalted butter, chilled and cut into ½-inch cubes
1 1/3 cups / 270 g superfine sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature, beaten
One 15-ounce can solid-pack pumpkin
1 cup seedless golden or dark raisins
¼ cup hulled unsalted sunflower seeds
1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400°F. Brush the insides of 12 to 14 muffin cups with softened butter, then brush the top of the pan.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt together into a medium bowl. Beat the butter in the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high speed until creamy, about I minute. Gradually beat in the sugar and continue beating, scraping the sides of the bowl often with a silicone spatula, until the mixture is very light in color and texture, about 5 minutes. Gradually beat in the eggs. Reduce the mixture speed to low. Beat in the pumpkin; the mixture may look curdled. In thirds, beat in the flour mixture, scraping down the sides of the bowl often, and mix until smooth. Add the raisins. Increase the speed to high and beat until the batter has a slight sheen, about 15 seconds, no longer.
3. Using a 2½ inch-diameter ice-cream scoop, portion the batter, rounded side up, into the prepared cups. Sprinkle the tops with the sunflower seeds.
4. Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F and continue baking until the tops of the muffins are golden brown and a wire tester inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean, about 15 minutes more.
5. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Remove the muffins from the pan and cool completely.