|Apple Butterscotch Muffins|
"Mmmmmmm, these are so yummy! Mummy, you have to put these on your blog". My heart melted and I was somewhat shocked my 4 year old had taken in my blog chat in recent weeks. To put this in context, I've been struggling in the last week to get a reaction like that from any food I have put before my kids. I had really become quite despondent by yet another screwed up face, 2 days ago at dinner. So the timing was great. I'll be honest, as I perused the aisles in the supermarket yesterday, I considered buying some ready made, kid friendly meals for them. It's takes a lot for me to that!
Anyway, my confidence and resolve to feed them healthy home-made food has been restored. Last night I made the simplest chicken dinner; an old fashioned Sunday Dinner in fact (even though it was Saturday night), with whole roast chicken, roast potatoes and asparagus. The munchkins gobbled up the chicken and potatoes heartily, but the asparagus was a bridge too far. A major step in the right direction I decided.
While I didn't take photos, I do think the recipe is well worth a mention. I was inspired by a Delia Smith recipe Roast Chicken recipe in her How to Cook Book 2. And as usual she came up trumps big style.
Simply put, I smeared the inside of my whole chicken with a tablespoon of softened butter, mixed with a few cloves of minced garlic and a couple tablespoons of chopped rosemary. Then I cut a lemon in half, chopped it into 4 wedges and stuffed them in too. Roasted the bird at 450°F for 54 mins then dropped it to 400° until the internal temperature hit 165°F. Then I removed the bird to rest, tented it with foil, and put the roasting pan on a burner with the lemons from the inside of the chicken. I added about a glass of white wine to the drippings, stirred up the tasty bits on the bottom and simmered the lot until gravy consistency.
All in all it was totally simple and delicious Roast Chicken, particularly with the gravy. Try it!
Anyway, back to the reason my daughter wanted me to write up my blog tonight; Apple Butterscotch Muffins. I've been experimenting for a few weeks with Lorna Sass's muffin recipe. She has the bright idea of making up a big batch of the dry ingredients for muffins, and storing in the fridge for quick muffins anytime. I'm all over the idea, and really like her base of wholewheat flour and oats. However, I've been testing out how little fat I can get away with and still have them taste good. Also, what combination of "add ins" we like best in this house has been under debate. By far the best received to date, has been today's combination of apple and butterscotch chips.
(based on a recipe in Lorna Sass' book Whole Grains for Busy People)
5 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 cups old fashioned oats
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
Mix the flour, oats, sugar and salt together in a bowl then sift in the baking powder and soda. Mix well and store in a large box or ziplock bag in the fridge for up to 4 months.
Note: Don't be put off by the volume of mix this makes; if the apple butterscotch muffins don't appeal to you, this mix is still well worth making up as I will be using it for more healthy muffin recipes in time.
Apple Butterscotch Muffins
Makes approx 16 muffins
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk, well shaken
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups muffin mix (stirred the lighten before measuring)
1 cup peeled, chopped apples
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
- Preheat the oven to 400°F
- Oil the muffins tins well (these tend to stick in my tins if not oiled carefully)
- In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, then whisk in the buttermilk, oil and vanilla.
- Stir in the flour mix until just incorporated then fold in the apples and butterscotch chips
- Using an ice cream scoop, fill the muffins cups approx 2/3 full
- Place the muffins tins in the oven.
- Bake for approx 7 mins then rotate the tin and bake a further 6 or 7 minutes (until a tester comes out clean)
- Carefully remove the muffins from the pan; they may stick a little so run a palette knife all the way around them before easing them out.
- Cool on a wire rack or eat right away!!