Monday, October 21, 2013

Muffins, muffins and more muffins

I don't know the muffin man, but I know the muffin toddler and her name is Olivia - she's OBSESSED. The only tantrums she's ever thrown in her short 14 months involve muffins, she doesn't mess around... I always sing "the muffin man" nursery rhyme before I give her one and she starts waving her arms and squeals, very cute. These are three of our favorites - vegan, very low in sugar, easy and DELICIOUS!!!!
Banana wheat germ muffin

My friend Cassie is my partner in crime against toxic living and gave me this awesome recipe that her little boys gobble up. They have lots of big banana flavor and the wheat germs gives a little bit of crunch - they taste so good its hard to believe they're so healthy. As soon as bananas start to get brown spots they make me gag, and I end up wasting lots of ripe ones - not anymore!

1 cup plain soy milk (almond milk works great too)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
2 very ripe bananas
1/3 cup canola oil (I always buy from Trader Joe's to ensure non-GMO)
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour or spelt flour
3/4 cup wheat germ (Whole Foods or any store with bulk bins)
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
 2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Pour the soy milk into a measuring cup and add the vinegar to it - set aside to curdle.

Meanwhile, mash the bananas in a large mixing bowl. Add the soy milk mixture to the bowl along with the oil, sugar, and vanilla and mix well.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, wheat germ, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Add this to the banana mixture and use a wooden spoon to gently stir the ingredients, until all the dry ingredients are just moistened.

Fill the muffin cups three-quarters full and bake for 22 minutes. Yields one dozen muffins.

Spiced Apple Crumb Muffins

Ed begs me to make my Spiced Apple Crumb Muffins and Olivia tears them up - everyone loves them is shocked to learn they're dairy free. The recipe is from Gwyneth Paltrow's "My Father's Daughter" cookbook, which I use all the time (also love her zucchini spaghetti, all her soups, and blueberry muffins). Her healthy lifestyle was prompted by her father's cancer, which I relate to completely. I kinda love all things Gwyneth Paltrow and have learned a lot from following her GOOP blog and great wellness tips, just wish I had her deep pockets to buy everything she recommends!!!

For the crumb topping:
1/2 cup spelt flour (buy at Whole Foods or anywhere that sells bulk flours)
1/4 cup whole rolled oats (not instant or steel-cut)
1/4 cup unrefined dark brown sugar (Trader Joe's has a great organic brown sugar that is perfect for this recipe because its not sticky)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
pinch of sea salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I only buy mine from Trader Joe's because it is GMO free)
1 tablespoon soy milk (I usually use almond milk, either works)

For the muffins:
1 tablespoon cornstarch (also buy at Trader Joe's, GMO free)
1 cup finely diced peeled apple (about 2 small apples)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons real Vermont maple syrup (Costco is best place to buy, great price)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoon soy milk (or milk substitute of your choice)
2 cups of spelt flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 cup lightly toasted walnuts, roughly chopped 

Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin tins with paper - I usually get 15 muffins from this recipe.
For the crumb topping, combine all the dry ingredients in a small gown.  Add the vegetable oil and soy milk and rub everything together with your fingers - the mixture should be pebbly.  Set aside.

For the muffins, in a small bowl, toss the cornstarch with the apples. In another large bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup of vegetable oil and all of the syrup and soy milk (I use a large Pyrex glass measuring cup). Sift the remaining ingredients (except for walnuts) and fold in the apples and walnuts. Fill the muffin cups and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick tests clean. My oven cooks them perfectly at 25 minutes - any longer and they're a little too dry.

SO GOOD!!! I keep 6 out and freeze the rest (they freeze beautifully). This is a top five favorite recipe for me - LOVE.....

Blythe's Blueberry muffins

This recipe is also from Gwyneth's cook book and are delicious! They are sugar free (use maple syrup and agave nectar instead) and vegan. Miss Gwyneth says "They rock the house."


1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup soy milk (or almond milk)
1/2 cup real Vermont maple syrup
1/4 cup agave nectar
2 cups spelt flour (Whole Foods or any store that has bulk bins)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
2 1/2 cups fresh organic blueberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix wet ingredients together, stir in the dry ingredients, and fold in the blueberries. Divide among the muffin cups and bake until a toothpick tests clean and the muffins are golden brown, 25-30 minutes. Let cool before eating (if you can...).

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