Saturday, October 1, 2011
Happy Wonderful October
The most beautiful month in Arizona has come. Finally. The 100 degree days are over and the 90's never felt so good. Today, October kicked off with a drop in temperature, a breeze that smelled of rain, and small monsoon.
I love fall in the desert.
The evenings are cooler and the mornings are crisp.
It's a time for afternoon picnics and patio dinners.
Pumpkins and decorative gourds start popping up in grocery stores and on kitchen tables.
The ocotillo leaves turn a beautiful yellow-orange before dropping to the dirt below.
The sun hangs lower in the sky and casts its "fall glow" on Tucson.
You can just feel the desert give a sigh of relief.
I decided to celebrate the first day of October by baking molasses-cranberry muffins. Usually I bake this as a bread, but recently I've been on a muffin-kick, and I think everything just tastes better and is more fun to eat in muffin form.
*Baker be warned. These are pretty freakin healthy muffins. I try to use as little sugar, butter and oil as possible when I bake (cue *gasps* from real cooks and bakers everywhere). But that just means I get to eat more of what I cook because it's healthier ;)
This recipe makes 2 dozen muffins. Let's hope I can restrict myself to one muffin a day.
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup oat bran
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 (heaping) cup oats
1 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
4 tsp vanilla
1 cup milk
1/2 cup yogurt (Greek yogurt is the best!)
1/2 cup olive oil (I have used apple sauce in the past and it is definitely dryer this way, but still tastes great)
1/3 cup molasses
1 bag dried cranberries
Pecans/walnuts to sprinkle on top
1. Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a small bowl.
2. Mix all of the wet ingredients together in a big bowl.
3. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir together.
4. Dump in the bag of cranberries (and eat a few) and mix in.
5. Spoon out the batter into the oiled muffin pans.
6. Cook at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.