Thursday, November 25, 2010

Lemon Blueberry Quinoa Muffins

Our cupboards are all mostly packed away, which means that I’m left with nothing to bake with. It took three boxes to contain all of my baking stuff; a large box for the pans, a medium box for the ingredients (minus the all purpose flour and sugar) and a small box for the extracts, sprinkles and miscellaneous other baking supplies. I haven’t even packed up measuring spoons/cups and those sorts of things yet. When did I accumulate so much baking stuff? I hadn’t baked in nearly two weeks, but thankfully, I was able to bake at work earlier this week.
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When I got to work on Tuesday, I noticed a new recipe book laying out on the counter and couldn’t help but flip through it. It’s called Quinoa 365: The Everyday Superfood. Maybe I’m a little behind the times, but I’ve never had quinoa. After briefly looking at the recipes for meals, I flipped to the back and studied the dessert recipes. I found a muffin recipe that didn’t require quinoa flour (my nanny family didn’t have any), and I decided to give it a go. I started out by cooking the quinoa, and for those of you who may not know this, it cooks up just like rice. I was surprised at the taste of the muffins. They’re a departure from my usual sugar laden baked goods, but I still really liked them. I didn’t get a chance to feed them to my nanny boys, but their Mom said that she really liked them. I’ll definitely try these again when I’m looking for something a tad bit healthier.
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{Left: uncooked quinoa. Right: cooked quinoa}

Lemon Blueberry Quinoa Muffins
From Quinoa 365: The Everyday Superfood by Patricia Green and Carolyn Hemming

(Printable Recipe)

1/2 cup white or golden quinoa
1 cup water
1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp grated lemon zest
3/4 cup white (or cane) sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sour cream
1 egg
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup frozen blueberries (do not thaw)
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1. Add the water and quinoa to a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the covered saucepan rest on the burner for an additional 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside to cool.

2. Preheat oven to 400F and line or grease a muffin pan.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in lemon zest and 1 1/4 cups of the cooked quinoa.

4. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and oil. Next, add in the sour cream, egg, lemon juice and vanilla, stirring until fully blended.

5. Stir the frozen blueberries into the flour mixture, and then fold the flour mixture into the sugar mixture. Fill up muffin cups and bake for 25-30 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
(Note: The muffin liners I used were small, so I only needed to bake my muffins for 12 minutes.)
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{Love the color of the batter!}

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