Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Muffin Tops

You know how your favorite jeans don't fit after you have that first baby...well, that is another discussion. This is a food blog, so I will actually be talking about how much I love to eat muffins instead (the tops are best, all crunchy on the outside and cakey on the inside - yum)! Muffins are great baby food because you can pack a lot of nutrition in one ready-to-go package. Below are some recipes for you to try...

Basic Muffin Recipe - makes 12
My good ole' friend Rosie gave me this recipe at my bridal shower eons ago. Play with different types of flour (whole wheat, all-purpose), sugar (brown, maple syrup), oils (canola, melted butter) and extras (blueberries, ground flax seed). The most successful muffins are made by combining dry ingredients separately, wet ingredients separately, mixing those together just until combined. DO NOT OVERMIX!!! Then add in any whole ingredients like nuts or berries. Also, you can mix the dry and wet separately the night before, throw them together in the morning, bake and voila - easy, yummy breakfast.

2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup oil

Preheat oven to 400 deg. Grease muffin tin or use liners. Mix all dry ingredients, mix all wet ingredients, mix both together until just combined. Spoon into muffin tin. Bake 20 minutes or until golden.

Raisin Bran Muffins - makes 6
(from Everyday Food Magazine)
I double the recipe and freeze them so we can have them anytime or pop them in Bai's lunch.

Healthy Banana-Blueberry Muffins - makes 12
(from Everyday Food Magazine)

Sweet Squash Corn Muffins- makes 12
(adapted from Feeding the Whole Family by Cynthia Lair)
I love Ms. Lair's cookbook. The food is very healthy, she has suggestions for babies with each recipe, and ideas for packed lunches. The recipes are so yummy; however, very expensive to make so I save them for when I want to impress someone, like my husband or his boss or my new mom friend.
1 1/2 cups cornmeal
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (you can find this in bulk in most grocery stores - then you can get it fresh and only buy what you need)
2 teaspoons non aluminum baking powder (you don't have to use nonaluminum but it just tastes better: http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives/2008/10/why_you_should_use_aluminum-free.html)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (you don't have to use sea type salt but there are claims it is healthier: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sea-salt/AN01142)
1 cup baked and mashed winter squash or red garnet yams (once I tried raw shredded yam and it worked too!)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 eggs
2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, for topping (these are a necessity - yum!)

Preheat oven to 375 deg. Grease muffin tin or use liners. Mix the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl and then set aside. Blend the squash/yam in blender with water and blend until smooth. Mix the yam/squash with the butter, maple syrup, and eggs and then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients; remember not to overmix. Fill muffin cups full with batter. Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds on top of each muffin. Bake 25 to 30 minutes. Top of muffin will crack slightly when done.

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