Sunday, November 16, 2008

Bran Muffins

In my eternal quest to cut down food costs and simultaneously sate the raging hungry beast that lies within my husband's stomach, I've found snacks to be a nemesis. "What else can I eat?" often wreaks havoc on my pantry stores when I don't buy snacks. On the other hand, if I keep snacks around, I eat them (which is not the goal). My solution lately has been to send snacks to work with Vance. That's worked pretty well for my self-control, but it's been expensive.

I realized recently that instead of buying snacks, it would probably be cheaper to bake some quick breads or muffins and send them instead. I thought I would share one of my healthier favorites. I like these bran muffins because a) they use whole wheat flour, mostly, b) you can use honey instead of sugar, c) they call for actual bran instead of a cereal, and d) I really like bran muffins.

So if you're looking for a new snack or breakfast item, you might want to give these a whirl. You'll need:

1 c. raisins
1 3/4 c. boiling water
2 c. bran
2 eggs
1/3 c. oil
1/3 c. honey (or brown sugar)
2 T molasses
1 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. milk
1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. flour
2 1/5 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt

In a medium bowl, pour hot water over raisins and let stand for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix eggs, oil, honey, and molasses.

Add oat bran to the water and raisins. It'll thicken up pretty quickly. Let sit a few minutes, until all the water is absorbed.

Add the raisin/bran mixture to the wet ingredients.

Add buttermilk and milk (or use sour milk if you don't have buttermilk, like I did....just put a couple of teaspoons of vinegar in the bottom of your measuring cup, then pour the milk in to 1 c.)

Whisk (or sift) dry ingredients together

Add them in.

Decide there aren't enough raisins, and throw more in (oh wait, that's probably just me...)
Congratulations! You deserve a break! Cover with plastic wrap, and let the batter sit in the fridge a few hours or overnight.

The next morning, grab your trusty cookie scoop. I'm not a kitchen gadget person, but I LOVE my cookie scoop. It's one of the best presents my mother-in-law gave me. Besides raising the most wonderful man on earth, and letting me marry him. That was a good one, too.

Turn on your oven to 400 unless you were already thinking ahead.

Then bake them for 20-25 minutes. Yield: 24 muffins.
The only thing I don't like about this recipe, is that the muffins have an annoying tendency to stick to the wrapper for the first day. If you don't like scraping it off the paper with your teeth, you might consider making a few in a plain greased tin for the first day. Other than that, everyone in my family loves them!


Ellen said...

Yeah, and your sister-in-law, who was instrumental in shaping the wonderful and amazing man that you married, gave you the knobby blue cup I see lurking in the picture. I'm sure it was also essential to the bran muffins. =)

Anonymous said...

hey, i really do love those cups! i'll add it to the list of Really Important Whitaker Gifts I've Received :)


rob said...

I was just thinking about snacks to give the kids. We do have a "snack basket" that they can grab snacks out of but can't open...yet. I fill it with granola bars, individual goldfish cracker packets and/or small raisin packets. But to save money I didn't buy any snacks this week.I had the idea about making extra waffles in the morning and then they could snack on a piece or 2.

Yes the perpetual task of snacking and they question should we or shouldn't we snack. Rob eats a pb & j sandwich after many a meal or as a snack. Good idea with quick breads or muffins.

See you Sunday!