Sunday, 15 January 2012

Carrot and Apple Muffins

This recipe is from The Joy of Baking. It's one of those great recipes that you can make any old time, as you'll probably have most of the ingredients in your cupboard and fridge. Luckily I had some walnuts leftover from the afghans I made yesterday.

Muffins are super easy to make, as they involve no beating or special equipment (save a muffin tray...) In fact, with muffins it's important not to over-mix, as this will result in tough muffins. You just combine your dry ingredients in one bowl, combine your wet ingredients in another, then mix together until just moistened. They are also quite healthy as they contain no butter, just eggs and oil to bind. I even cut down the amount of sugar in this recipe from 1 1/4 cups to 1 cup - which when divided between 21 muffins isn't a lot.

Let's begin:

Look at all those healthy ingredients! I feel healthier just looking at them.

You'll need:

1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, coarsely chopped
2 cups grated raw carrot (about 2-3 peeled carrots)
1 large apple, peeled and grated
2 cups flour
1 cup caster sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable or sunflower oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C, and grease your muffin tray with a little butter. Next, prepare your nuts, apples and carrots. Chop the nuts and peel and grate your apple and carrots.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and ground cinnamon. Stir in the nuts. Set aside.

In a separate bowl whisk together the eggs, oil, and vanilla extract. Fold the wet ingredients, along with the grated carrot and apple, into the flour mixture, stirring just until moistened. Evenly divide the batter between the prepared muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  

Remove from oven and let cool. After about 10 minutes remove the muffins from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.

I made these muffins quite small to fit into our lunchboxes (geeky lunchbox blog coming soon...) and made 21. However if you made full sized muffins you would get about 15 out of this recipe.

The only downside of muffins is that they don't last very long in the fridge - 3 days max. However you can freeze them and bring them out as and when you want them. You can defrost them by leaving them out for a few hours, or using a microwave.

These muffins would be delicious with cream cheese frosting if you happened to have cream cheese in the fridge! (I don't and it's too cold to go out and buy some!)

Happy eating! x

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