Monday, March 15, 2010

Do You Know the Muffin Man?

Well, actually around here it is the Muffin Lady and she's me. Muffins are one of the hit breakfast items around here. We usually have them with some fruit or yogurt. The type of muffin varies. Most of the time it is based on whatever I've got in the freezer from the past summer like zucchini and pumpkin.

Banana is another big muffin base. If the ones on hand here start to head south before someone eats them, I just toss them - skin on- into the freezer. When I've got a big bunch (pun intended), it's time to have banana muffins. You can often find bananas that are past their prime in the reduced produce section of the grocery store. If you don't want to make the muffins when you get home, just throw in the fridge. On muffin making day, take the bananas out and put them in the sink or a bowl (you'll see why when you do it) to thaw. To use them, just squeeze them right into your mixing bowl. The kids love this part.

A word of caution: falling frozen bananas are a freezer hazard and can cause pain if they hit your toes.

On Saturday morning, I made about six or seven dozen muffins - chocolate zucchini and banana. We ate some for breakfast on Sunday morning. Some will be eaten as snacks this week. The others went into ziploc bags for future breakfasts. When muffins are on the menu, I take the bag out the night before. In the morning, I put the muffins in a muffin tin, cover with foil and warm at 350 degrees. They taste like they were just made! (You can warm them in a microwave, but we don't have one. Can you say freaks?)

In the summer, we shred any zucchini that we don't eat or give away measure four cups into ziploc sandwich bags and freeze it. When zucchini muffins are on the menu, I get it out of the deep freeze, let it thaw, squeeze all the water out and throw it in the batter.

Here's one of our favorite muffin recipes.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
makes about 20-24
2 c white sugar (I use about 1 1/2 c)
1 c vegetable oil (I use 1/2 c oil & 1/2 c plain yogurt)
1/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 t vanilla
2 c grated zucchini
3 c flour
1 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1 t salt
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground nutmeg
1/4 t ground cardamom
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease muffin tins or use liners. In large bowl beat eggs. Beat in sugar and oil. Add vanilla, cocoa and zucchini. Stir well. Stir in baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices and flour. DON'T stir it lots. Stir until everything is just moistened. Your muffins will get all pointy on the top (I think my Home Ec teacher called these peaks and we lost points for it) and not be as tender if you mix the batter a bunch after the dry ingredients are added. Fill tins about 2/3 full and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Let them sit for a bit after you take them out of the oven and then dump them out. Once they are cooled, you can bag them for the freezer.

See how easy muffins are! You don't need a mix! You don't even need a crazy veggie or fruit. There are lots of great muffin recipes online - just google it. Try oatmeal muffins or honey whole wheat muffins, if you don't think those you love will like pumpkin...although they might surprise you. And if you make a whole bunch at a time, you'll have several meals and snacks at your fingertips.


  1. Sorry about the spacing on this one...I've tried to fix it and it just gets worse.

  2. This is the Big Guy chiming in... One of my favorite things about muffin day is to see my little gals working in the kitchen with their, my "other" little gal. Especially because of the inevitable mess on their faces!

  3. Thanks for the motivation, Wen! I just pulled four dozen banana chocolate chip muffins out of the oven and have grated zucchini thawing on the counter to try your recipe!

  4. Posted at 4:25 am???? You are the woman who rises early!

  5. Yeah Lisa! Now you can watch the disappear amazingly fast. :)

    Mary Jo...Ron laughed when he saw your comment. Um, no. I am not an early riser at all. I am trying to get better but it is a mighty struggle.