Sunday, February 14, 2010

Whole wheat muffins with raisins and dried cranberries

I have never particularly had an opinion one way or the other about parties, only that people who extend an invitation have to be respected. By parties I mean potlucks, birthdays, get-togethers or anywhere a small group gathers to celebrate or complain or whatever the case maybe. To some I go out of a sense of duty, some out of necessity and some of out of real interest. But none that I have looked forward to as much as the 'bon voyage' party our neighbor had for her son last week. Amidst the snow and being stuck inside, it provided an opportunity to get outside even if it were just a few steps walk over to the next door. The party was postponed a day to give time to dig ourselves out first and gave all the more reasons to look forward to it. I am building up the climax more than necessary but you get my point. Well anyway the guest of honor who is going away on a job to Spain could not make it to the party because he was snowed in, another family who are also our neighbors 2 houses over and the daughter of the house made it, giving enough people for a celebration. We sang 'bon voyage' to the tune of Kumbaya over the phone, ate some delicious cake and lunch.





The snow has brought things to notice that we might have forgotten and even kindled the non existent baking skills, muscles and bones in my upper and forearms that I never knew existed. You have got to read this short news article for some laughs. If you have a good technology to truck snow hundreds of miles without melting please do let me know, I would like to make some money selling it to Vancouver who are in a severe snow drought. I maybe joking but this is no laughing matter. More the evaporation, more severe the winter storms and hurricanes are going to get, what goes up eventually has to come down either in the form of rain or snow. Direct effects of a warming planet.

Baking is not one of my forte not that I have many fortes, the patience and precision required is not just my cup of tea. Sometimes it is the gazillion ingredients and instructions that makes my eyes glaze over even before I have read through the ingredients list while sometimes it is the warning to stick to the actual measurements which is very very hard. So I see this muffin recipe on Red Chillies and it sure sounded doable and it looked like it would lend itself quite nicely to modifications and additions. The first chance I got to make it out, made a beeline to the grocery store to buy some apple sauce.

Being cooped in the house has made a baker out of me and I have cranked up the oven more times in the last week than I have the entire last year.






We regularly buy bran muffins, it has a very dense texture and is not cakey. If you like your muffin to have a cakey texture, substitute with all purpose flour. I am not fond of cake like sweet muffins for breakfast, so went with stone ground whole wheat flour. The kids are also quite fond of the bran muffin and so this muffin was just perfect for us.






Serving: 12 muffins + a small 'cake' loaf
Whole wheat muffins with raisins and dried cranberries
Ingredients
1. 2 Cups whole wheat flour (stone ground)
2. 2/3 cups of sugar (turbinado sugar)
3. 2 1/2 cups of unsweetened apple sauce
4. 1 egg + 2 tbsp butter (substitute with oil or increase the apple sauce by a cup)
5. 1/2 tsp salt
6. 1/2 tsp baking powder
7. 1/2 cup raisins + dried cranberries
8. 1-2 tbsp broken pecans

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Beat the egg till frothy.
2. Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
3. Add the apple sauce into the dry ingredients and mix together, add the egg and the butter till well combined.
4. Mix in the raisins and cranberries.
5. Pour into lined muffing pans and the greased cake pan.
6. Top with the nuts
7. Bake for 25 minutes and a knife inserted comes out clean.

29 comments:

  1. i always prefer muffins over cakes as they are cuter and make me less guilt concious. these days i also have started making cakes, cookies and muffins with whole wheat flour. these cranberry muffins look lovely.

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  2. Such a healthy muffins, nowadays am baking with whole wheat pastry flour, those muffins looks marvellous..

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  3. there is something to be said abt the warming effects of an oven when u are snowed in.. i too tend to use the oven a lot during the winter.:)) muffins look good!!!andi bet they taste so much better than the ones u get to buy!

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  4. I don't like parties either with all snotty Surgeons and specialists wives (most of them) expecting me to convert to their religion any day now! Seriously!! When I say I went to Catholic school (convent means Nunnery here!:D), they ask why didn't they (meaning Nuns) try and covert. They say I have nice "Spanish" face and we must feel so lucky to be in US.They don't believe if I say we were never poor or we have a bigger house in India than here! :D Ignorance!! But I have to go these parties, I just tolerate!

    Muffins look great, healthy with bran. I prefer just Cinnamon toast here, you don't feel hungry like you feel in India. I have been baking as well, mostly bread.

    I just bought this Organic Whole Wheat flour which looks like plain flour, must bake some savory crackers.

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  5. He he he..Dig yourselves out..U know we had some snow too. Donno why this year it is so cold...Same neighbor as that incident?

    Muffins look yum ISG. The aroma of baking is so good on such snowy days.

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  6. No Ruchika, these neighbors are different. I was not in partying terms with the other one to begin with.

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  7. Muffins look delicious and very flavorful, gorgeous clicks! i love that you have used whole wheat flour, its so much more healthy!

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  8. wow, lovely cute muffins and they are guilty free...whole wheat..nice way to make it.

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  9. I would like to go to parties, if only my family and friends would hold some! :-D But I don't hold any either, so I guess I won't get too many invitations. I'm due to host home lunch for colleagues for about 5 years now, where I work, we all have different schedules and it's hard to get everybody together. :)

    Whatever your baking skills, they look good, Indo!

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  10. The wholewheat muffins sound great, Indo!! I'm glad you had a ncie party! It's a bummer that the guest of honor was snowed in and couldn't make it, but sure he must have felt so good to hear the bonvoyage song over the phone! I would have. :)

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  11. Wholewheat muffins looks yummy and mouthwaterng..

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  12. This is perfect for a healthy morning start-up!

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  13. I share your outllook on parties.. mostly I end up going because 'you got to do that'... the best 'parties' are when a few near and dear ones get together and share good time. Love the whole wheat muffin, I really like that your recipe is very healthy (less butter more wheat).. I am sure going to try this one soon.

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  14. The muffins look very nice, Indo!It must have been aromatic in the house!!

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  15. What a healthy snack that makes ...

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  16. Indo - Perfect muffin recipe, low on fat and high on fibre! It's funny how you said you had to dig yourselves out :D

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  17. I love parties, hosting and being a guest... but lately I've been so darn lazy to host many parties. It is the cleaning part that stops me. Those muffins look great and your pics are looking really good. I haven't baked in a while, we need a couple of snow days here too.

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  18. The muffins look plump and fresh Indo! Ah...I am not a party girl...I can go for ating but not for anything else. And digging snow is a rally killing job! Take care Indo!

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  19. EXOTIC MUFFINS!!!!!! Loved the look, the feel & the texture..... Very tempting.......

    As for the parties..... I have no idea.... I have not attended any... such.... at least..... May be even if I did, I would give peeps the right kinda treats, they are worth of..... SO CHIT bhi meri aur Pat bhi meri.....

    Ash....
    (http://asha-oceanichope.blogspot.com/)

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  20. This is probably the first time that I am going to use whole wheat for baking! I will give this a shot!

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  21. Same here, I do not have any strong opinion about parties, I do enjoy myself when I go or host one and mostly the kids have a blast so it is good that way.

    Have seen these muffins at RC's, looks gorgeous

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  22. Indo, I never expected snow of 10-12 inches here. While living in Boston, it was the normal thing, I have done the digging too but here it was glorious winter in 07 and 08. Could walk around, sit in the front yard and sip tea.But now it is freezing.

    And yes, the mint, kothamalli, sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower and green onions are growing like the inflation. My banana plant and tulsi is gone though.Was sentimental about it for a few days.

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  23. Love muffins and I could eat them at any time of the day :D Your version sounds way too healthy...Hope you had a wonderful V day :-)

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  24. Of late, I'm on a cranberry craze!

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  25. Love those pictures, the muffins look so good with all the dried fruits. So glad you liked the recipe; though I have not tried it with the stone ground wheat flour.

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  26. Hi Indhu,

    Found your blog thru my neighbor Uma.
    You have a very nice blog. Muffins look very healthy.

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  27. I cant imagine that much of snow - well atleast it left you baking :) Looks like those were some amazing muffins!

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  28. Why no posts ? Hope all is well at your end Indo.

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