Part of my plan to kill time during the holidays is re-reading the Harry Potter series - right from book 1. I'm up to 3 so far and my goal is to finish book 6 before the movie comes out. What does this have to do with food? Well apparently, witches and wizards are keen on pumpkin. I'm not sure where that association comes from (maybe Halloween?) but Harry is always talking about pumpkin juice and pumpkin pasties so... it reignited my 'thing' for pumpkin.
I do have a thing for pumpkin. Can't really put my finger on WHY - I mean the flavor is quite mild and it's not very sweet and it's not exactly savory. It IS orange though, which is pretty cool.
Point of my story is: pumpkin muffins. I spotted the recipe in Bill Granger's 'Feed me now' and it pushed the right buttons: pumpkin + spices + healthy. Seemed like a guilt-free pumpkin pie but in muffin form, which is all good and no bad.
I followed this recipe almost to the tee but substituted butter for apple sauce in a bid to eliminate fat completely. Also, I only made 1/2 the quantity of the original recipe.
- 125g plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 40g brown sugar
- 40ml buttermilk (I used a mix of yogurt and skim milk)
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 40g apple sauce (you can use melted butter instead)
- 170g mashed cooked pumpkin (I microwaved mine but you can also steam)
- 40g mixed dates and seeds(you can use sultanas instead)
1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees. Line your muffin tray with paper cups.
2. Combine all ingredients, being careful not to over-mix.
Note: The original recipe suggests combining dry ingredients first and wet ingredients in another bowl before incorporating the dry into the wet. I didn't bother with that with resulted in a tougher texture but I didn't mind because I had my muffins cold. If you want a fluffier texture, do it stepwise and DON'T OVER-MIX.
5. Divide the mixture evenly between the muffin papers.6. Bake for 20min or until golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
7. Cool slightly before serving.
I thought the pumpkin muffins tasted a lot better once they cooled down completely in the fridge. I served mine with vanilla yogurt and maple syrup - great for breakfast or as a late night snack.
Admittedly they weren't The Nicest muffins in the world but they're super healthy and coupled with yogurt, they do hit the spot for a pumpkin craving.