Toasted Bran Muffins

Toasted Bran Muffins

Nancy Silverton’s bran muffins from La Brea Bakery are hailed to be one of the best, and for good reason.  The crumb is tender and rather light for a bran muffin, yet they have that familiar fibrous chew. The flavour has a subtle toasted note and a hint of orange.  They have minimal refined sugar by using pureed raisins to add natural sweetness and moisture.  They are my personal favourite in the bran muffin arena with just a small smear of butter.

I originally stumbled upon these muffins from Alexandra Cooks Nancy Silverton’s Bran Muffins, who slightly adapted the recipe by blending all the raisins, leaving the final texture without whole raisins.  It’s also my desired way to eat them even though my recipe reflects the original method. Both ways are delicious and it comes down to personal preference. 

I’ve gone on to adapt the recipe slightly further by replacing a small amount of the water with orange juice and I’ve opted for a different mixing method with wonderful results. It’s recommended to use paper liners as they tend to bake up with a nicer domed top if using them. Without the liners, the tops tend to spread just a little more. I also recommend that you weigh your dry ingredients for better results.  I have done both, and have found that my weighted measures provide more than my standard scooping with a measuring cup. It does make a difference in this recipe.

If you love muffins, Nacy Silverton’s are a must to make, whether it be the original recipe or my slightly altered version, you won’t be disappointed.  Enjoy!

Recipe for Toasted Bran Muffins adapted from Alexandra Cooks Nancy Silverton’s Bran Muffins 

 

Toasted Bran Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Toasted Bran Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: muffins
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉ and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners. Spread wheat bran out on a large baking sheet and toast in oven for 6-8 minutes turning once.
  2. While wheat bran is toasting and cooling, cook 1 cup of raisins and 1/2 cup of water in a small saucepan over medium heat until soft and the water has been absorbed, about 10 minutes. Puree raisins until smooth.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together wheat bran, flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl whisk together oil and brown sugar. Add egg and egg white and whisk to combine. Stir in pureed raisins, remaining 3/4 cup water, buttermilk, orange juice and orange zest.
  5. Add dry ingredients and stir just to combine. Stir in 1/2 cup of raisins. Scoop evenly into muffin cups, mounding the batter.
  6. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool for 5-7 minutes before removing muffins from tin to cooling rack.
Recipe Notes

-it is highly recommended to weigh dry ingredients.

-when scooping the batter, the muffin cups will be very full.

-if you don't want whole raisins in the final muffin, cook all the raisins with 3/4 cup of water and blend, continue with recipe adding only 1/2 cup additional water (for 1 1/4 cup total) and omit raisins at the end.

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

Okay, I’ll say it….BACK TO SCHOOL is upon us!  For some, this will be a welcome event, as everyone falls back into a structured routine.  For others, it marks the end of summer, saying goodbye to camping and late night fires.  As for me, it’s a reason to bake up wonderfully moist Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins.  Perfect to grab and go in the morning on your way out the door, lunch boxes or a mid day snack to get you through the day. 

The recipe for Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins makes 14 rather plump muffins.  I know, I know, 14 is not the norm as everyone expects to get 12.  I’ve considered mucking around with the amounts to bring the volume down, but I ask myself why?  They’re perfect the way they are, and frankly, the more muffins the merrier.  I know my husband would agree, and you won’t regret having a couple extra tender, chocolaty muffins either.  Enjoy!   

Recipe source for Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins:  Compelled To Cook

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
14 Muffins 25 minutes
Cook Time
18-20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
14 Muffins 25 minutes
Cook Time
18-20 minutes
Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
14 Muffins 25 minutes
Cook Time
18-20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
14 Muffins 25 minutes
Cook Time
18-20 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: Muffins
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉ and line 14-18 muffin tins with paper cups.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and oil. Add eggs one at a time, whisking well after each. Peel and mash bananas, add to bowl along with yogurt, orange juice and vanilla. Whisk to combine well, then add flour mixture, whisking until just combined and starting to smooth out. Stir in chocolate chips.
  4. For large muffins, scoop a generous 1/3 cup of batter per muffin tin. For smaller muffins, use a 1/4 cup of batter per muffin tin.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, depending on size. Remove from oven and allow to cool in pan slightly before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Recipe Notes

Will keep for several days at room temperature wrapped individually or in a sealed container.  They freeze well wrapped individually and will keep for up to a month.

Looking for more great muffins?  You’ll want to try Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins

Chocolate Cherry Loaf

Chocolate Cherry Loaf

As much as it pains me to turn my oven on in the summer, giving off unnecessary heat when the goal is to keep the house cool, I just can’t stop baking for months.  I ask myself who could?  I guess as a food blogger the thought astonishes me and as I write this I’m shaking my head and thinking, “nope, it can’t be done”.  Lucky for both you and me that I feel this way, because out of the heat rises the most amazing Chocolate Cherry Loaf.

I’m a big fan of loaves!  Not because they’re moist, tender, buttery, filled with nuts or chocolate, it’s because they’re simple, versatile and generally quite easy to prepare.  I also like the ability to cut the loaf into thick slices, wrap individually and grab and go right from the freezer.  My husband Mark calls them “loafcicles” and sometimes can’t wait long enough to let it thaw completely before munching away.  You could say he’s got a bit of a sweet tooth.  That makes this Chocolate Cherry Loaf right up his alley.  It’s a little indulgent with cream cheese, chunky cherry sauce and chocolate chips, and a small slice is all you need to battle that sweet craving.  You’ll find Chocolate Cherry Loaf a yummy change from banana or lemon and worth turning your oven on for.  Enjoy!

Recipe source for Chocolate Cherry Loaf:  Inspired by Roti n’ Rice Raspberry Swirl Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Chocolate Cherry Loaf
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 30 minutes
Cook Time
55-65 minutes
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 30 minutes
Cook Time
55-65 minutes
Chocolate Cherry Loaf
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 30 minutes
Cook Time
55-65 minutes
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 30 minutes
Cook Time
55-65 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: loaf
Instructions
  1. Combine cherries and sugar in a small sauce pan and heat to a simmer over medium heat. Stir water and cornstarch together in a small bowl and add to cherries, stirring constantly until combine and mixture returns to a full simmer. Remove from heat and allow to cool to slightly warm or room temperature. Continue with recipe as cherries cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 350℉ and prepare a 9"x5"x3"loaf pan by spraying with non stick spray or lightly greasing with butter and lining with parchment that overhangs the long edges.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt until combined.
  4. Beat together butter, cream cheese and sugar until smooth, scraping the bowl once or twice. Add eggs one at a time, scraping bowl and beating after each until incorporated. Add vanilla and mix to combine. Pour in half the milk and half the flour and beat until just combined. Repeat with remaining milk and flour. Scrape the bowl and add chocolate chips and mix to combine.
  5. Pour half the batter into prepared pan and spread smooth. Top with half the cherry sauce, remaining batter and cherry sauce again on the top. Using a table knife, swirl batter in a figure eight pattern two or three times to create nice swirls of cherry sauce. No need to over swirl.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely in pan prior to lifting out and slicing.

Parsnip Spice Muffins

Parsnip Spice Muffins

Give your carrot muffins a makeover with these wonderfully spiced and tender Parsnip Spice Muffins. Just like carrots, parsnips cook down to provide moisture, flavour and sweetness to baked goods. Already having a sweet note, parsnips readily take on an array of spices such as cloves, ginger and cinnamon. So get ready to fill your kitchen with the scent of baked goods and glorious spices with these gorgeous muffins.

Inspired by Bon Appetit’s Parsnip Spice Cake, I chose to lighten up the batter with applesauce and use less oil, sugar and eggs to create a relatively healthy muffin. Tender and moist with a spicy aroma and flavour. They’re particularly good with a drizzle of sweetened cream cheese for a little sweet treat, but eaten plain with a cup of tea is also a pleasure.

Parsnip Spice Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-28 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-28 minutes
Parsnip Spice Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-28 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 muffins 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-28 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: muffins
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉ and line 12 muffin tins with parchment or muffin liners. In a small bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, spices and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together oil and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, incorporating after each. Whisk in applesauce, milk and vanilla to combine. Whisk in flour mixture and parsnips until just combined. Stir in pecans.
  3. Divide batter equally between prepared muffin tins using a generous 1/4 cup of batter each. Bake in preheated oven for 25-28 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool to room temperature.
  4. In a small bowl stir together cream cheese, icing sugar, milk and vanilla to form a smooth texture. Drizzle or spread onto cooled muffins.

Peppered Popovers

Peppered Popovers

Crispy, golden and beautifully puffed makes Peppered Popovers perfect for tearing apart and dunking or drowning in warm gravy, and I think it’s safe to say that most of us know popovers solely as gravy catchers. But I’m here to share a little secret, they’re a stellar side with soup, stew, chili and braises. Crispy, eggy and ohhh so good! Easy too! Everything gets whisked in a bowl, poured into muffin tins and baked, ta-da, done! They’re delicious with their heavy hand of freshly ground black pepper and generous dose of nutmeg.

I will admit to having my share of popover failures over the years. You know those spongy hockey puck like disks that form from the seemingly perfectly puffed domes when you remove them from the oven? I’ve been there, so hopefully you don’t have to. The trick to perfect popovers every time is two fold. Firstly, start with a very hot oven, and second, allow the popovers to cook long enough to dry out and hold their shape. Because of the high baking temperature they appear to be puffed and golden to the point where you’re thinking they will burn if you don’t remove them. That’s when you need to stop yourself, because they may appear cooked but the inside is still too wet and they’ll collapse when removed from the oven when they no longer have the assistance of steam to keep them up. Hence the hockey pucks! So to solve this, the oven temperature is reduced to prevent over browning yet allows the insides to fully cook, retaining the dome structure.

Recipe source for Peppered Popovers:  Adapted from Bon Appetit’s Nutmeg and Black Pepper Popovers

Peppered Popovers
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 popovers 15 minutes
Cook Time
30-33 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 popovers 15 minutes
Cook Time
30-33 minutes
Peppered Popovers
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 popovers 15 minutes
Cook Time
30-33 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 popovers 15 minutes
Cook Time
30-33 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: popovers
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425℉. Pour 1/2 tsp of canola oil into bottom of 12 regular size muffins tins. Place in oven and allow to heat for 5-7 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk eggs until smooth. Add milk and whisk until combined. Add remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth, approximately 30 seconds.
  3. Remove muffin tins from oven and fill each with approximately 3-4 tbsp of batter (about 1/2 full) Return to oven and bake for 18 minutes until puffed and starting to brown. Reduce heat to 350℉ and continue to bake for an additional 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately.

Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins

Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins

Loaded with goodness, Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins are wonderful for breakfast and easy to grab on your way out the door in the morning. They’ll make skipping breakfast a thing of the past.

If you think you always need to use pumpkin puree for your baked goods, you’ll need to re-think your pumpkin. Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins are not only plump and gorgeous but healthy and nutritious made with shredded pumpkin, nuts and seeds. Using shredded pumpkin lends body, moisture and sweetness to the final product and the overdose of nuts and seeds provides a little healthy protein. Be sure to use a fine grater to grate the pumpkin or the shreds will be too big to cook and break down in the time it takes to cook the muffin.

The recipe makes large muffins and you will find that the batter will fill the muffin cup, but don’t be alarmed, they’ll rise up quickly into perfect domes without too much spread. The added crunchy sweetness from the almond topping makes the muffin top even better. Enjoy!

Recipe Source: Compelled To Cook

 

Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 large muffins 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 large muffins 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Pumpkin Seed and Nut Muffins
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 large muffins 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 large muffins 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Pumpkin Seed & Nut Muffins
Almond Topping
Servings: large muffins
Instructions
Pumpkin Seed & Nut Muffins
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉. Line 12 muffin cups with large paper liners. In a small bowl whisk together flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, salt and allspice. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl stir together brown sugar, almond butter and melted butter until smooth. Add eggs one at time, whisking after each. Whisk in buttermilk and vanilla. Stir in grated pumpkin. Add dry ingredients all at once stirring until just combined. Do not over mix. Stir in nuts. Scoop batter evenly into prepared muffins cups (each will take a heaping 1/3 cup of batter). Top each muffin with a generous sprinkle of almond topping. Bake in preheated oven for 20-22 minutes or when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to rest in pan for 10 minutes prior to removing muffins to a cooling rack.
Almond Topping
  1. Toss together almonds, melted butter and honey until almonds are coated evenly. Set aside.
Recipe Notes

Recipe Source:  Compelled To Cook