Mom and her sister are here, both from warmer climates, muttering about how cold it is here in Northern California. “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Fransisco,” Mark Twain said of our weather too, so they are in good company.
I root around in the pantry for something to satisfy mom’s request for a “hot breakfast cereal is too cold do you have any oatmeal?” She says without stopping as I turn over the Bob’s Red Mill cornmeal package I’ve pulled from beside the flours.
Mom is mostly gluten free, so I say, “Muffins?”
“Oh, good then we can turn on the oven…”
“…and the heater when everyone is upstairs, otherwise we cook them.” Even though heat rises, our house has two climates: upstairs frozen tundra and downstairs scorching desert.
I’m scanning the ingredients and making mental calculations; eggs, yogurt, brown sugar, soy flour, how can I replace those? Mom is off soy too, at the moment. I have a plan. Not gluten free, but warm and very tasty served with nut butter or jam.
I bake as an experiment, using the recipe as “guidelines,” for quantities of liquid, sweetening and binders to replace eggs. Sometimes it works, oftentimes not so much. Today it did.
I give you Outrageous Apricot Muffins thanks to the thermostat and my oddly stocked pantry. Fortunately, I doubled the recipe so it makes 2 dozen muffins. We finished the first dozen this morning.
Dry ingredients- combine well in a large bowl.
2/3 cup medium grind organic cornmeal
2/3 cup garbanzo flour (replacing soy flour)
1/2 cup toasted wheatgerm
1 cup organic whole wheat flour
1 cup organic white flour
1 cup ground raw hazelnuts (pulse chop in blender or Cuisinart)
1 cup ground raw pecans
1 cup organic raisins
1 package (about 1 cup) Trader Joe’s frozen semi dried apricots, chopped roughly into 1-3 centimeter pieces
2 teaspoons of baking soda
Liquid ingredients- mix together in a quart sized measuring cup or bowl.
1 cup vanilla almond milk (I like Trader Joe’s refrigerated brand)
1 small container of coconut vanilla non dairy yogurt (about 1 cup)
1 cup of honey or agave
2/3 cup of canola oil
Juice and grated zest from one large orange
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons chia seeds (to replace the egg, you can also use the same quantity of ground flaxseed)
1/2 cup unsweetened organic applesauce
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Gently combine wet and dry ingredients, fill paper lined muffin tins with a generous 1/2 cup of batter. Bake in a preheated 350degree F oven for 25 minutes. An inserted toothpick should come out clean.