Saturday, July 23, 2011

Recipe: Healthy Banana Blueberry Muffins with Oat Bran

As a general rule, I am quite a positive person.  But when the heat index outside is over 105 degrees for what seems like forever, I tend to crack.  It's just miserably hot everywhere, in the kitchen, in the car, on the porch. I was just sitting outside as I do every evening and even at 10 o'clock at night it is still HOT. How is that possible? Don't answer that- I now how it's possible, it's just exhausting.  Not even the beautiful summer vegetables are making the heat wave worth it. (ok, that's not true, but still- I do wish it would cool off, even just a little and for more than an hour).  Okay, I'm done whining now.  On the bright side, the rain has cooled things off even if it's only while water drips from the sky and it's been a welcome reprieve.  As a result,  I can turn every oven on at the same time and it's bearable.  So you see, there was a purpose to the weather talk.  I've been waiting for it to cool off so I could sample batch after batch of muffins to come out with the perfect one and not get heat stroke while I do it. Task complete.

I am by no surprise very particular about my muffins. The perfect muffin criteria: they should be moist, but not soggy, substantial but not dense, only slightly sweet as they are not cupcakes and in this occasion made with whole grains and healthier than usual.   I used fresh blueberries since they are still in season, but frozen blueberries will work as well.  When baking and using frozen berries, it's always best to leave them in the freezer right up to the moment you need them.  I find they defrost quickly and once they do, they have the tendency to become soggy, and turn whatever batter they go into a sort of pink-blue color.  I also coat the berries in a little bit of flour before adding to the batter to keep them from sinking to the bottom, this applies to fresh or frozen. 

Notes: I use an ice cream scoop to evenly divide the batter in the muffin pan.  My scoop holds about 1/3 of a cup.  I find this is the easiest way to make uniformed sized muffins. Stir gently, the batter should be a little lumpy.  The bananas should be very ripe, and mashed completely so as to give as much moisture as possible.  The muffins are not very sweet at all, a nice addition if you like them a little sweeter would be about a tablespoon of honey. I baked them in muffins cups, but I think next time I will just grease the pan, they did stick a little to the papers.

Healthy Banana Blueberry Muffins with Oat Bran

1-1/4 cups flour
1 cup oat bran
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup skim milk
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 mashed bananas
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Additional sugar for Sprinkling tops of muffins if you wish.

1. In a medium bowl, mix flour, bran, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt together.

2. In a separate bowl, mix all remaining ingredients except for the blueberries.

3. Combine wet ingredients with flour mixture and stir just to blend.  Add blueberries and mix lightly.
Divide batter evenly in paper lined muffin cups (see note). Sprinkle tops with sugar and  bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.  Store at room temperature.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Katia, it seems you posted this recipe some time ago but was wondering if I could sub the sugar for 1/2 cup of coconut palm sugar and can I use wholemeal flour or should I use plain? Thanks Bec :)


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