Sunday, November 25, 2012

Raisin-pecan-flax Bran Muffins

During this time of the year, I often crave sweets instead of the high fiber foods I should really be eating to keep my immune system and digestive tract in top shape. And so, with my cravings focused on sweets but my body needing nutritious and high fiber foods, I turned towards the best of both worlds: the bran muffin! Widely known as a healthy way to start the day or as an awesome snack anytime of the day or even as a treat to end the day (with a bit of warm almond cinnamon milk or a mint tea, anyone?). Here is a winning recipe that will surely satisfy those sweet cravings, while at the same time working to keep your body healthy!

Ingredients (original recipe here, below is my recipe)
1 1/2 cup wheat unprocessed bran
1 cup buttermilk (low-fat or non-fat)
1/3 vegetable oil (or 1/3 cup apple sauce or pureed bananas) 
1 egg
2/3 cup brown sugar (or honey or molasses)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose-flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup raisins
1 tablespoon flax (seeds or ground)
1 tablespoon chopped pecans
*yields one dozen muffins*

What to do?
Soak the raisins in water, set aside.
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease muffin pan set aside.
Mix together wheat bran and buttermilk; let stand for 10 minutes. 
(*if you do not have buttermilk, it is easy to make it with milk, vinegar or lemon juice: look here for instructions).
Beat together oil, egg, sugar, and vanilla, ad add to wheat bran and buttermilk mixture. In a separate container, sift together flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Once sifted, stir into buttermilk and wheat bran mixture until just blended. Then add raisins, flax, and pecans and blend together well. 
Spoon batter into muffin pan and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 
*These can be frozen for up to a week and warmed in the microwave for about 30 to 40 seconds and they make a perfect breakfast treat! Enjoy!


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