Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Most mornings I wake up and barely have time to sit down for breakfast; mostly because when the alarm goes off at 7, I snooze-smack it three times so that when I finally kick the covers off and roll out of bed sullenly, I have only 20 minutes left to get ready. That usually means breakfast and coffee on the go. On-the-go breakfasts can be terrible for you (and terrible for taste); I hate poptarts so I usually just resort to a banana and some buttered toast.
Recently though, I've taken to trying to find something that I can grab in the mornings very quickly, that will be good for me and that will taste pleasant with a cup of my favourite hazelnut coffee.
Therefore, behold the perfect cranberry and chocolate chip muffin, a superfood that will fight cancer and promote weight loss - I kid you not. Cranberries have antioxidant properties that help prevent cancer (and apparently cholesterol) while flaxseed has Omega-3 that may help promote weight loss. Almonds contain a high level of protein and also has that cholesterol busting property. A recipe made with no butter helps keep you trim and lean. And yes, I should start working for Weight Watchers ... but does that mean I have to stop using eggs altogether?
Perfect Cranberry and Chocolate Chip Muffins
Makes 12 muffins
3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp milled flaxseed
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup applesauce
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup skim milk or soy milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl with a fork. Set the oven at 425°F.
In a separate medium bowl, beat the egg until fluffy. Add in the oil, milk and vanilla extract. Mix well.
Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and gently pour the egg mixture into the well. Using a spatula, fold the ingredients together. Do NOT use a mixer. After folding the batter about 7 times, add in the cranberries, chocolate chip and almonds. Fold again for another 13 times to make up 20 times that you stir the batter.
Line a muffin tin with paper liners. Spoon the batter into each cup until it is almost full, leaving only about 1/8 of an inch from the batter to the top of the muffin paper. This will give the muffin the domed shape.
Bake the muffins at 425°F for 7 minutes. Turn the heat down to 395° for another 20 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle of the muffin comes out clean. Cool on wire racks.
The muffins should keep for about 3 or 4 days if you cling wrap and refrigerate them. To serve, sprinkle some water and microwave for about 10 seconds. Serve with butter and marmalade or jam.