Archive for Muffins

Apple Crumbcake Muffin

Delicious!

How could anyone not love the fall? The weather is perfect, the trees are colorful, and all of the best fruits and vegetables are in season. Everything about the season practically begs you to sit around in your most comfortable jeans (or pajama pants) and sweatshirt, drinking coffee and eating muffins. Perhaps these apple crumb cake muffins from Vegan with a Vengeance perhaps?\

I ended up making these because it was a particularly chilly night, which of course immediately puts me in the mood to bake, and because I wanted something already made for the next morning’s breakfast before work. I had everything I needed for this recipe already on hand, including a handful of delicious organic Gala apples. They were very simple to make and turn out to be very rewarding.

I love these muffins because they rise high and look super appealing. You really just want to take a bite out of them the second you see them, and the crumb topping on top only fuels the fire. I normally am not a fan of crumb toppings because I think they make the muffin too sugary, especially for the mornings, but this one complimented the muffin very well.  In addition to looking great, the make the house smell fantastic as well, since there is nothing better than warm apples, nutmeg and cinnamon. They have the perfect amount of spice, and there definitely is that distinct apple flavor, enhanced not only by the grated apple but by the apple chunks as well. The muffin is outrageously soft and moist, and finished with a nice crunch from the brown sugar topping.

I would love to make this again soon, before the fall is over and apples are out of season. They only lasted ONE day in my house. Everyone seemed to agree that they were one of the best muffins I have made. I think I would have to agree.

perfection

Carrot-Raisin Muffins

Gooooood morning

Vegan with a Vengeance really knows how to do breakfast/brunch. In flipping through my recipe books (I do this way too often), I saw this recipe and knew I had all the ingredients. Plus, the spices and carrots have a good autumn feeling to them. I recently bought a huge canister of raisins since they were on sale, so this was a good chance to use them.

Here’s the recipe:

  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 cup flour (I used whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I added a little more, as said, I like cinnamon)
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated carrot

Grated carrots are a gorgeous thing

Begin by preheating the over to 400 degrees, and prepare your muffin tin. After this, get out a bowl of hot water to soak your raisins in. This will let them plump up, so they will be juicy and chewy in your muffins. I did this with the dried cranberries in the Zesty Cranberry Crumb Muffins from My Sweet Vegan and it makes the dried fruit so much better.

Then, mix together the baking powder and soda, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar and salt. After this is thoroughly mixed, add the milk, oil and vanilla. Mix this until it is just fully combined. Drain the water from the raisins and gently fold them into the mixture.

Fill the muffin tins to be about three-quarters full (you’ll get about a dozen muffins). These will rise (and look) nicely for you! Let them bake for 18 to 22 minutes, cool, and enjoy!

mmm!

I love these! They are so addicting though. Whenever I even set foot in the kitchen I thought about eating them, so needless to say they didn’t last long at all. They were perfectly moist (especially with the plump raisins) and you could really taste the carrot, yet without it being very overwhelming, which combined with the cinnamon and nutmeg was glorious. It was not over-the-top sugarly like some muffins, which is never something I want in the morning, or out of muffins in general. I know the quality of the pictures isn’t that stunning since the lighting was down right terrible in my kitchen at the time, but these muffins really do have a gorgeous color as well, very golden brown, with shreds of carrots  I can’t wait for there to be more carrots around the house so I can make these again.

#2!

I told you I love breakfast right? My original intentions for cooking through My Sweet Vegan were to skip around through each of the sections rather than to cook straight through the book, simply so I would not be making a ton of cakes or cookies all at once.  As it turns out, however, I return once again to the sweet starts section, with yet another muffin. I love them, I can’t help it. There are few things better for gearing up for a crazy work day than relaxing in the early-morning sun in the backyard, listening to birds while reading, fueling up with a cup of coffee (or half a french press, in my case) and a muffin.

And so the Zesty Cranberry Crumb Muffin came next. Well, almost, because I didn’t put on the crumb topping. I didn’t want an ultra-sugary muffin (plus it saved me from eating more margarine too) first thing in the morning – I don’t doubt though that the topping would be great on it, as it the crumbly goodness often found on cobblers and apple pies. The muffins were excellent without it!

If only you could smell these...

Between the orange zest and the dried cranberries plumping up in warm orange juice, the house smelled amazing, each of the scents perfect for a warm-but-not-too-hot summer evening.  They baked great, but were still a little sticky afterward, but this may have been combated had I actually used the crumb topping. I didn’t actually mind though.

Re-hydrating the cranberries in orange juice not only made them nice, plump and soft again, but also added a great taste. Who can deny that oranges and cranberries are fantastic together?  This combined with the orange zest made the muffins intensely flavorful and sweet, without a ton of added sugar. My brother loved these as well (he likes to eat all of my creations), and they only lasted about two and a half days in house. They were still very soft and fresh-seeming going on the third day as well, which was very impressive (I did, however, store them in the toaster oven where they were a little sheltered from the open air). I would love to make these again sometime soon!

Baking Quest 1!

After staring at the My Sweet Vegan cook book, by Hannah Kaminsky, I decided that I wanted to bake my way through the entire thing. Everything looks absolutely delicious in it, and I have a love for baked goods like you would not believe. Baking is the ultimate stress reliever for me, and who needs retail therapy when you can bake your way to happiness? I realize this will take time and effort, and I am totally fine with that.

I love breakfast. So much. There’s a reason why it is the best and most important meal of the day. In this mindset, I decided to start in the sweet starts section, beginning with the Better Banana Nut Muffin. I followed the directions/ingredients exactly, except for the fact that I made it nut-less. At this point in time I was looking for a muffin without a crunch but that was brimming with bananas, and this was the recipe, as it uses both dried and mashed bananas.

Fresh out of the oven

Everyone in the house loved them, and I even got my father to eat them (he usually will never knowingly eat vegan food)! They truly lasted less than a day, probably because they were the perfect amount of crunchy from the oats, yet soft from the bananas. The addition of the dried bananas really took these muffins to the next level.

While there were some left....

I even ate some for breakfast, and then took one to work with me….

The final one

I would easily make them again. They were not all that time consuming, and they were well worth any invested effort anyhow. Perhaps next time I would even add the nuts, as there is nothing about the recipe I would change now regardless. Better banana muffin? I think so.