Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Behold it's Fall: Cranberry and Apple Muffins


I've just realized that the last time I updated this blog was a week ago. Since starting school again for my PhD program, I haven't been able to do much cooking and have resorted to easy meals (like salmon steaks) that I chuck on the grill. I'm lucky though, to be living with someone who isn't as fussy about food, and who makes good Phad Kee Mao for those days when all I want to do sit in front of the TV and not move.

One of the terrible things (the are uncountably many of them) about having to attend lectures in the morning is that if I have several classes in a row, I get insanely hungry and sleepy. I find that munching on something along with a thermos-full of coffee usually helps. I guess that explains why when I was taking more classes two years ago, I was much chunkier.

Muffins are the best things to bring with you and works for a lunchtime dessert as well. You can leave the muffins at room temperature for 3 days, and freeze the rest for up to two weeks. But I'm pretty sure it will all be gone by then. As fall is now officially on its way, I've decided to use some lovely Washington-grown Gala apples for a batch of muffins.

Cranberry and Apple Muffins
Makes 15 muffins

3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tbsp grated orange peel
1 tbsp ground flax seed
1 tsp allspice
2 tsp grated nutmeg
4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg, beaten
1 cup applesauce
3/4 cup soy milk/skim milk
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 large gala apple, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
3/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries

Oat streusel (optional)
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup light brown sugar
4 tbsp butter or margarine

Cut the butter into the oats and sugar using a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbles.

Preheat oven to 425°F.

In a food processor, pulse 1/2 cup oats for 10 times.

Combine processed oats, flour, sugar and spices together in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in beaten egg, applesauce, canola oil, milk, lemon juice, vanilla extract and orange peel. Stir gently for about 6 -7 times with a large spatula.

Add in cranberries and chopped apples. Stir again until all the ingredients are just combined, about 15 stirs. Be careful not to over mix batter. Spoon into lined muffin tins until it almost reaches the top of the mold. Sprinkle the oat-butter-sugar mixture on top.

Bake muffins at 425°F for 5 minutes then turn heat down to 395°F for about 20minutes until a knife or skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove muffin tins from oven and set over a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Turn the muffins out and cool completely on wire rack.

7 comments:

amritac said...

Ok....that is seriously yum. The crunchies on top look cute!

Amanda said...

amritac: not terribly unhealthy either!

Sophie said...

These look just great (I saw them on tastespotting). Autumnal, tasty and healthy!

Courtney said...

I'm pretty allergic to flaxseed -- can you think of anything I could substitute? They look fantastic and I really want to try them!

Amanda said...

sophie: thanks for your comment! i really like your blog - i've added it to my list.

courtney: you don't need flaxseed at all. i use it because of it's purported health benefits, but by all means, you can skip it.

Leonor de Sousa Bastos said...

I'm also on my way to my postgraduate course at the cooking school and I'm afraid I won't have so much time for my blog...
Your muffins look like a delicious idea for a break between classes!! They look delicious... :)

Kevin said...

Those muffins look great! Nice way to usher in fall.