24 March 2011

Breakfast of champions


It’s hard to get a better, good-for-you kind of baked breakfast treat than these oatmeal berry muffins.  I couldn’t believe that something made without any white flour would come out this tasty, but believe me; you’ll really enjoy these guys, especially when you know what goes into them.

Just look at the list of ingredients, and you can feel good about eating these muffins.  They’re made with oats and whole wheat flour, plus oat bran, wheat germ, apples, and berries.  You’ll get plenty of soluble fiber and nutrients here!  I made a few adaptations from a bakery recipe, using low-fat buttermilk and substituting homemade applesauce for the oil.  Gasp, yes, there are still apples hanging on my tree since last Fall, but, they’re actually still in prime condition!


These muffins turn out soft and fluffy, but since I love getting the pecans nice and crunchy and deepening the caramelized flavor of all the toasted edges with extra crispiness, I take them an extra step, eating them split and toasted.  They’re great plain, with a cup of tea or a glass of milk, or dressed up with a dollop of plain yogurt and applesauce.  I bet they’d be great with some clotted cream or a smear of cream cheese too.


A fun Wiki fact to munch on: “Oats contain more soluble fiber than any other grain, resulting in slower digestion and an extended sensation of fullness.  Here’s to a good start to the day with these breakfast muffins!

Oatmeal Berry Muffins
Adapted from Tazzaria in Visalia
Makes 8 - 18 muffins, depending on size of pan

Vegetable oil or spray for greasing muffin tins (or muffin cup liners)
2 ¼ cups quick-cooking oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
½ cup coarsely-chopped pecans
½ cup (packed) dark brown sugar
¼ cup white, granulated sugar
2 tablespoons oat bran
2 tablespoons wheat germ
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
½ cup (homemade) applesauce
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups frozen mixed berries (blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries), thawed and drained

Preheat oven to 375 F.  Grease 8 large muffin cups (1-cup capacity) or 18 standard muffin cups (1/3-cup capacity) with vegetable oil or nonstick spray.  (Note: If you want a “muffin-top” look to your muffins, make fewer muffins and increase the amount of batter you portion out per muffin.  In this case, however, I highly recommend using muffin cup liners to ensure that your muffins will release from the pan!  I found that it is nearly impossible to get them out intact unless you run a knife around them to release them from the sides of the pans.)

Whisk oats and next 9 ingredients in large bowl. Add buttermilk, applesauce, egg, and vanilla; stir until dry ingredients are barely moistened, then gently fold in berries.  (Note: Be careful not to over-work the batter, otherwise your muffins will come out rubbery.)

Divide batter among prepared muffin cups and bake muffins until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 28 minutes for large muffins and 20 minutes for standard muffins.  Cool 10 minutes. Turn muffins out onto rack; cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Leftovers are delicious sliced open and toasted!

P.S. Photos today are brought to you courtesy of my new camera!


beyondkimchee said...

Congrats! What camera is it? The photo looks fantastic!

erica said...

Thanks! I'm pretty excited--it's a Nikon D7000. I got it just a few weeks ago (a back-ordered Christmas present ^_^). It's a pretty intense camera for someone like me who's never used a DSLR before, so I have a lot to learn!

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