Strawberry, Apple + Almond Breakfast Muffins

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* My only advice for these is serve warm and ENJOY!

Strawberry, Apple + Almond Breakfast Muffins ~ Adapted from the What Katie Ate Cookbook

1 1/4 cup self-rising flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1/2 cup superfine sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Finely grated zest of 1/2 a lemon (I used a whole, you can’t ever have enough!)

Large pinch of fine sea salt

2 tsp natural vanilla extract

1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 apple, peeled, cored, and cut into small cubes

6 large strawberries, hulled and quartered

Handful of sliced blanched almonds

1-2 tbsp light brown sugar

Warm water (see below)

 

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper baking cups or rounds of parchment paper. In a large bowl mix together the flour, almond meal, superfine sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, lemon zest, and salt. In a separate bowl combine the vanilla extract, melted butter, eggs, and 3/4 cup warm water. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well, then add the apple cubes and gently stir to combine. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup to about three quarters full. Place two strawberry quarters on top of each muffin, then sprinkle with the almonds and brown sugar. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Baked Blackberry Oatmeal

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Greetings! I hope you are having a merry holiday. This time is one of my favorites, the in-between time right before New Years Eve. There may be some work involved but it is a time filled with laughter, parties, loved ones and food. This hearty breakfast bake fits in perfectly and brings a smile to your face on these chilly mornings. Resembling a fruit crumble more than oatmeal it is quite a treat! The blackberries are warm and syrupy, bursting with flavor. With a cake like oatmeal mixture in the middle and topped off with sweet crunchy sunflower and pumpkin seeds. YUM, I will start my mornings like this, please.

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Blackberry Oatmeal Bake ~ adapted from Vegetarian Everyday

14 oz fresh or frozen blackberries (thaw if frozen)

2 cups rolled oats

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp ground ginger

a pinch of sea salt

2 large eggs

2 1/4 cups milk of choice

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/4 cup pure unsweetened honey, agave, or maple syrup

1 tbsp coconut oil + extra for greasing the pan

3/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds (original recipe uses toasted hazelnuts)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8 x 10 baking dish and spread the berries in an even layer on the bottom of the dish and set aside. In a mixing bowl combine the oats, baking powder, ginger and salt. In another bowl add the eggs, milk, and vanilla and whisk until combined. In a smaller bowl mix the honey/maple/agave syrup, 1 tbsp coconut oil and the nuts/seeds (use your fingers to make sure all of the seeds/nuts are well coated). Pour the dry oat mixture evenly over the berries then pour the egg mixture over evenly. Sprinkle the seed mixture on top and bake for 35-40 minutes or until the oatmeal is set (no liquid) and the seeds are lightly browned and crunchy. Cool slightly before serving.

Pear, Speculoos, Oat & Lemon Zest Muffins

A Star Muffin.

A tasty combination of awesome in one compact muffin. Are you ready?

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This is a time for warmth and comfort. For flavors that and a little heat and zing to your average ho hum day. As January comes to a close Spring begins its slow creep forward from the shadows. Their is a smell of hope in the air..it may be slight..and disappear at times like tonight when the weather drops down below freezing again..but alas it exists. With the combination of cinnamon, pear, lemon and that magical concoction known as speculoos you are sure to jump right out of bed in the morning just to have a bite.

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Pear, Speculoos, Oat & Lemon Zest Muffins

makes 10 small muffins or 6 large muffins

1 pear, diced (roughly a cup)

1 large egg

1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax + 3 tbsp water)

1/2 cup light brown sugar

3.5 tbsp coconut oil

2 heaping tbsp speculoos spread

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup millet flour

1/4 cup brown rice flour/almond flour mix

1/2 cup oats, plus more for topping

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 heaping tsp ground cinnamon

pinch of sea salt

zest of 1/2 an organic lemon

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl mix the flax and water and set aside (for 5-10 minutes). In a Large bowl combine the millet, brown rice and almond flours, oats, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl whisk the egg, flax egg, vanilla extract, coconut oil (make sure the coconut oil is not solid), light brown sugar, and speculoos spread until fully combined with no lumps. Stir the lemon zest into the wet ingredients last. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir, once combined gently stir in the diced pear. Lightly grease a muffin pan or line with parchment paper and fill with batter. Sprinkle muffin tops with extra oats before placing in oven. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean. If you decided to make 6 larger muffins they will need more baking time, at least 30-35 minutes.

~ Enjoy, and as always..stay warm ~

Hamantaschens!

The one tradition my family has kept once a year is making hamantaschen cookies from scratch

These beauties have a light sweet dough and endless filling possibilities.  The true test is trying not to eat all the fillings up while your trying to make them…

For the dough mix 2 3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 tbsp baking powder, 1 tsp orange peel, and 1/2 tsp salt in a large bowl.  Add in one stick of cut butter, canola oil, and water.  Then mix in 2 beaten eggs and 2 tbsp of milk.  Once the dough binds together knead until smooth.  Divide the dough in half and wrap both portions in wax paper.  Refrigerate for at least an hour before baking or overnight.

When your ready to bake flour your surfaces, or entire kitchen table, to allow for plenty of rolling pin room.

Roll up your sleeves, flour your hands, and get down to business.  Roll out the dough, you might want to knead it for a quick second first, then with a 3 inch round cookie cutter cut out as many circles as you can.

Take the leftover dough, knead it back into a ball, then start all over again.  Making as many hamantaschens as you can.

You can fill a hamantaschen with almost anything, which is the pure beauty of this tasty cookie.  A traditional filling is poppy seed, but we also use an array of fruit spreads, peanut butter, and chocolate chips.  Next year I’m throwing nutella into the mix, I smile just thinking about it!

To fold the hamantaschen you fold three sides of the circle as shown, making sure to pinch the ends.

When your ready to bake preheat your oven to 350 degrees and place hamantaschens on a greased or lined baking sheet.  Bake for 20 minutes then take out and let cool.

A perfect example of what happens when your corners are not properly pinched…

Dough Recipe:

2 3/4 cups flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1 tsp grated orange peel

1/2 tsp salt

1 stick of butter

1/4 cup canola oil

1 1/2 tsp water

2 eggs

2 tbsp milk

Fillings:

assorted jellies, nut spreads, and chocolates.  Get creative and make up something new!

Click here for the history behind the treat.

Enjoy ~

Dark Chocolate Raisin Graham Cracker Bread

~ Dark Chocolate Raisin Graham Cracker Bread ~

One of my favorite desserts of the summer, hands down, is THE s’more.  The combination of crunchy graham crackers, melty chocolate, and gooey marshmallows ……… is simply one of the best combos out there.  When I found a recipe for a graham cracker bread I knew I had to try it.  So as my last recipe before departing for France tomorrow I give you:  dark chocolate raisin graham cracker bread.

Marshmallows could have been added for a more authentic s’more treat but I enjoyed the subtle taste of raisins and dark chocolate.  This bread is sweetened with only applesauce and honey so it isn’t over the top on the sweetness scale.

Dark Chocolate Raisin Graham Cracker Bread
adapted from Sweet & Natural
1 cup flour of choice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup graham cracker crumbs [ground crackers of choice in food processor for crumbs]
1 flax egg [1 tbsp ground flax seed mixed with 3 tbsp water]
1/3 cup honey
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup dark chocolate chips  [can use vegan or carob chips as well]
1/4-1/2 cup raisins
Mix flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt together then set aside.  In a large bowl mix applesauce and graham cracker crumbs until well combined.  Add flax egg and mix until well combined.  Mix in honey until well combined.  Alternatively mix in flour mixture and almond milk, then finish with mixing in the chocolate and raisins.  Pour into a sprayed loaf pan [mine was 9×5] and bake at 350*F for about 50 minutes.

This bread was so moist and had just the right amount of sweetness.  Absolutely delicious 😉

What is your favorite way to eat graham crackers?