All right, in this, as in all culinary endeavors, it's important to gather your basic ingredients and create a proper mise-en-place to work. You will need to lay out:

1 Muffin of Dubious English Provenance
1 Fork
1 Butter Knife
1 Tablespoon Butter, high-fat European style if possible
2 Tablespoons Peanut Butter (I prefer Jif, chunky of course)
2 Tablespoons Jelly, Jam, Preserves, Conserves, Marmalade or Aspic

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-Using the fork, carefully split the Muffin of Dubious English Provenance into two relatively equal parts, then shake over sink to remove excess crumbs that would otherwise fall to the bottom of your toaster and potentially spark a muffin fire.

-Toast the Muffin of Dubious English Provenance for 2-3 minutes, until well-browned and lightly crispy. Remove from toaster and set on plate.

- As has been proven in many years of testing, it is a physical impossibility to divide a Muffin of Dubious English Provenance exactly equally, so one side of the Muffin of Dubious English Provenance will be smaller than the other. Find the smaller side and apply one tablespoon of butter to it, evenly distributed, then set aside to let it melt into the nooks and crannies.

-While the lesser side is melting, smear 2 tablespoons of peanut butter on the greater side, evenly distributed, then set aside to let it melt into the nooks and crannies.

-Pick up the lesser side, now glistening with melted-butter goodness, and take one medium-sized bite. Do not exceed one-third of the surface area of the muffin-half, but do not nibble. Take a good bite. Savor.

-Smear the remainder of the lesser side with one tablespoon of your chosen jelly, jam, preserves, conserves, marmalade or aspic. Set to rest for one to two minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.

-In the meantime, once the peanut butter on the greater side has been reduced to a semi-liquid state, pick it up and take one medium-sized bite. Do not exceed one-third of the surface area of the side, but do not nibble. Take a good bite. Savor.

-Smear the remainder of the greater side with one tablespoon of your chosen jelly, jam, preserves, conserves, marmalade or aspic. Set to rest for one to two minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.

-Eat half of the remaining butter-and-jam-besmeared lesser side.

-Eat half of the remaining peanut-butter-and-jam besmeared greater side.

-Eat the last of the lesser side (it should be around one-third of its original size at this point).

-Eat the last of the greater side (it should be around one-third of its original size at this point).

-Repeat as necessary.


And that's the method, developed and refined through decades of trial and error and experimentation. I hope this ennobles and heightens your 2 AM muffin-eating experiences, and I'm happy to hear any constructive feedback or questions about the finer points of the technique.

Happy 2 AM eating!