Avocado Brownie Muffins

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Whether life’s simple pleasures include avocado is up for debate, but fudge and brownies are first on the list, and this muffin combines both while concealing the debatable fruit.

Dark chocolate and fudgy mousse come together with avocado in this incredibly decadent muffin that tastes like a brownie. In addition to being velvety smooth, this recipe just so happens to be grain-free and dairy-free.

The pureed avocado adds a creamy texture without influencing the taste.

If you ever make a muffin, this is the one to make.

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Avocado Brownie Muffins (makes 12)

2 large ripe avocado, mashed (about 2 cups) 
2 eggs 
2 tsp vanilla 
1 Tbsp water 
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (equivalent to 1/2 cup melted chocolate)
1 cup + 1 Tbsp cocoa powder 
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda 
Pinch of salt

1. Preheat your oven to 355°F.
2. Grease muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
3. In a food processor or blender, puree avocado with eggs, vanilla and water until smooth.
4. In a microwave safe bowl or glass measuring cup, melt chocolate in 30 second increments until smooth.
5. Add melted chocolate to avocado mixture and mix through.
6. Add cocoa, sugar, baking soda and salt and mix until just combined.
7. If mixture is too thick, add 1 tablespoon of water and combine.
8. With an ice cream scoop, spoon mixture into muffin pan. Smooth out tops (optional).
9. Bake for 20-23 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean.
10. Allow muffins to cool for 4 minutes before removing them from the pan. Chill in the fridge.

*Notes:
These will last in the refrigerator for a few days (and are even better after a day or two). They keep in the freezer for months.

 

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Hamantaschen Muffins

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You might think it’s difficult to turn hamantaschen into muffins, but yes you can muffinize™ the traditional pastry that is served on the Jewish holiday of Purim.

The classic Purim cookie is a three-cornered cookie called “hamantaschen,” which means “Haman’s Pockets” in Yiddish.

The original filling was an Eastern European jam of prune or sweetened poppy seeds. In modern-day Tel Aviv and New York, hamantaschen has been modernized, with lemon, cherry, apricot, chocolate and amaretto.

Now, the cookie’s being transformed yet again. These muffins may be lacking the “three corners,” but they have pockets full of the taste of the original hamantaschen.

Experiment with different fillings, or go traditional.

Pictured below are cherry, apricot, chocolate-hazelnut, and prune-filled hamantaschen muffins.

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Hamantaschen Muffins (makes 12)

2 2/3 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup milk

Topping:
4 Tbsp butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar
12 oz jar jelly, jam or preserves

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Grease muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour, sugars, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt.
3. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk butter, oil, eggs, vanilla and milk.
4. Pour wet ingredients over dry mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.
5. Bake for 15 minutes, until muffins are golden and tops spring back when touched lightly.
6. Let muffins cool for 15 minutes, then use a cupcake corer or knife to cut a hole in the top of each.
7. Dip each muffin in melted butter, then sugar.
8. Fill each hole with jelly.
9. Dip cut-outs from muffins into leftover melted butter and sugar (optional).

 

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

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A bowl of creamy old-fashioned oatmeal is a healthy and nutritious way to start the morning, but who has time to cook the old-fashioned way. Amp up your morning bowl of oatmeal by muffinizing™, and start enjoying the old-time breakfast anew.

Incredible is an understatement. These muffins are hearty and filling. Sweet, but not too sweet. Serve for dinner on a cold winter’s day alongside some soup, or for breakfast year-round.

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Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins (makes 18-20)

1 1/2 cups oats (old fashioned or quick oats)
2 and 2/3 cups flour (white, whole-wheat, or a mixture of both)
2/3 cup sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter, melted (cooled)
1 heaping cup chocolate chips (mini or regular) or raisins or chocolate and raisins

1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Grease muffin pan with cooking spray.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, four, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
3. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, milk, vanilla, and butter.
4. Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until moistened. Fold in chocolate chips.
5. With an ice cream scoop, spoon batter into muffin cups to 2/3 full.
6. Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until tops are light golden.

 

 

The Ultimate Comfort Food: French Toast

This article was featured in Swirls and Spice on October 21, 2014.

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To kick off the pumpkin season, the food world seems to be baking with orange-hued vegetables like carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes. Culinary creators are enhancing dishes with seasonal spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger.

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These fall tastes bring memories of home and hearth so much so that there is no doubt about the level of comfort in the autumn-inspired muffin. Variations include pumpkin cream cheese, carrot cake, sweet potato, and honey corn.

However, when I think of Autumn and its ultimate comfort food, I think of French toast. It’s a breakfast classic. Often served with maple syrup or jelly. Sometimes finished with melted butter and salt.

My grandmother, whom I remember making breakfast in her hot pink bathrobe and slippers, would serve French toast dusted with powdered sugar. The following recipe takes me back to her. It’s a muffin that’s light and fine. Its taste is French toast. Its texture, more delicate.

Both toppings below are equally delicious. The first is a cinnamon and sugar glaze, and the second combines the traditional tastes associated with French toast: drizzled maple syrup and powdered sugar. As on French toast, apply the topping by drizzling. Or, dip each muffin into a puddle of maple syrup and a mound of powdered sugar or cinnamon-sugar mixture.

For more nutritious fall muffin recipes, go to www.MuffinMama.org

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French Toast Muffins

  • Servings: 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (or allspice)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup dairy milk (or coconut milk* for dairy-free)
  • 1/3 cup butter or coconut oil, melted

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Grease muffin cups with cooking spray or line with paper muffin liners.
2. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg and salt. Make a well in the center of the mixture.
3. In a separate bowl, stir together egg, milk, and melted butter.
4. Add egg mixture to flour mixture; stir until just moistened (batter may be lumpy).
5. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.
6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
7. Top each muffin with one of the two coatings (recipes below) and serve warm.

*Note: For dairy free muffins with coconut milk, you may need to add about 2 tablespoons more liquid, such as water.

Topping 1: Cinnamon Sugar Coating

  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup butter or coconut oil, melted

1. In a bowl, combine cinnamon and sugar.
2. In a separate bowl, melt butter.
3. Dip tops of finished muffins in the melted butter, and then in the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Topping 2: Maple Sugar Coating

  • maple syrup
  • confectioners’ sugar (icing sugar) for dusting

1. With a toothpick, poke a few holes in muffin tops.
2. Spoon over a good quality maple syrup.
3. Sprinkle powdered sugar on tops.