For the Quick Jam
Place the frozen cherries, sugar, dried cherries, lemon juice, corn starch, almond extract and cardamom to a heavy-bottomed, medium sauce pan over medium high heat. Use either a potato masher or the edge of a spatula to mash the cherries so you have some smaller bits. Bring the mixture to a boil, mashing as you go, and after a minute or two of boiling it should start to thicken. Lower the heat to a simmer and let it cook for 4-5 minutes or until the liquid has reduced a bit and the mixture has thickened. It will continue to thicken as it cools. Set aside to cool completely before assembling the muffins.
For the Streusel
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and sea salt. Using a pastry blender or your hands, work the butter into the mixture until it resembles wet sand and when pinched together it holds into clumps. Gently mix in the almonds and place in the fridge. If storing overnight, cover; otherwise it’s fine for an hour-ish. After you bake the muffins you will have some leftover streusel which freezes beautifully, fyi!
For the Muffins
In an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat the oil and granulated sugar on high until smooth, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl periodically so that everything is well mixed together. With the mixer on low add the eggs one at a time, mixing the first completely before adding the second. Finally add in the lemon zest and almond extract and mix until smooth and combined. Take the bowl out of the mixer.
In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the milk into the oil-sugar mixture in two batches, ending with the milk. Stir until just combined. Cover and let sit in the fridge at least one hour. **IDEALLY, let this batter chill in the fridge for at least one hour. It can sit covered in the fridge overnight as well. This gives the flour time to absorb the moisture and makes for a puffier crown.
Preheat the oven to 375F (190C) and place a rack in the top 1/3 of the oven, at least 6-inches from the heat source. Line every other muffin well with a muffin liner. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of batter to the muffin liner, top with 1 teaspoon of cooled jam, another 1 1/2 tablespoons of batter, another 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of jam and then crumble some streusel over the top. Make sure to pinch the streusel as you drop it over the top in little clumps. Also, you want your muffin liner filled 3/4s full. Fill the empty muffin wells with a little bit of water; fill them about 1/4 of the way full. Be careful transferring the tray to the oven.
Bake for 20 minutes in the top third of the oven or until a toothpick comes out clean and/or they bounce back when gently pressed in the center. For best results, bake one tin at a time. Let cool in the muffin tin for about 10ish minutes, then use a butter knife to help get them out to finish cooling on a rack. Serve with leftover cherry jam!
Thank you so much for baking these Cherry Jam Streusel Muffins!! Please tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so that I can see your gorgeous muffins!!