Living some place for some time without some things causes change.
Complete and total change. I was excited to make pumpkin muffins this week, partially because the flavor fits perfectly with fall and partly because I have access to cans of real pumpkin. I was looking forward to the incredible flavor that I remember when eating loaves of pumpkin bread from years past. But when I made these, all I could think of was squash. Real life, honest-to-goodness vegetable squash.
Don’t get me wrong, they tasted good, not bad. But, you see…you cannot get cans of pumpkin year round in Peru or even seasonally and the pumpkins come in for about a week and they charge an arm and a leg since they know the gringos are the only crazy ones who want to buy them. They even call orange pumpkins “calabaza americano” or American Squash.
All these years, any and every recipe that called for pumpkin would thoughtlessly and effortlessly get replaced with sweet potatoes. Typically I would boil one or two extra for meals and then peel and mash the bright orange flesh. Anytime I saw pumpkin, I read sweet potato. It was as though the automatic translator in my mind not only worked from Spanish to English but also from English to English or from US to Peru. And on days when I am really not thinking I translate from English to Spanish – for myself.
Anyways, all that to say…I think these would be really tasty with sweet potato instead of pumpkin. I did make a few slight changes when I baked these. I used a bit less butter (3/4 cup for one batch), replaced the raisins with dark chocolate chips and used pecans. I did bake them the full amount of time although as soon as the buzzer went off I remembered that several people commented on them being done early.