Friday, November 18, 2011

Oat Orange Cranberry Muffins


Put on your rain pants and pull up your mud boots; time to tramp through the bogs.  It's cranberry season and the Northwest bogs are brimming with these bright scarlet-red, ripe fruits.  Fall to your knees and pick yourself a basket full...

The muffin recipe is dear to my heart.  I once had an injury and had to spend 10 days laying on a massage table.  My sister fed me through the hole of the table, and these muffins were the only thing palatable.  Two years later, my sister force fed these muffins to me during my labor with Ella.  Even with those two memories, these are my still favorite muffins.  I try to always have a dozen in the freezer for unexpected guests or busy mornings when we have to eat breakfast on the go.   This recipe is tried and true.

Oat Orange Cranberry Muffins
Don’t be fooled because these are gluten-free, egg-free, soy-Free, and high-fiber.  They taste great and make you feel better!  If you aren't so lucky to live in the land of bounty, you can find fresh frozen cranberries in most grocery stores, or just substitute them with blueberries.

3 c. Molly’s muesli, ground to flour in a blender (substitute rolled oats if you don't have muesli)
2/3 c. raw sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 T ground flax (if using oats, not necessary with muesli)
2 T organic butter
3-4 oranges (for 3/4 c. OJ and peel of one orange or just use prepared OJ)
1 1/2 tsp brown rice vinegar
1 c. fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix Molly’s Muesli flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a bowl.

Add zest, oil, juice, and vinegar to the dry mix, and stir together well.

Stir in cranberries.  Put cupcake liners in muffin cups. Pour muffin mix into the muffin liners, filling the liners 2/3 full for 12 muffins.

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, or until toothpick stuck in the middle of a muffin comes out with only a few tiny crumbs attached.

Enjoy immediately, or let cool and freeze for later!

Ammen and Ella playing in the cranberry bog

Cranberries are full of nutrition benefits.  They are well known to prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs), likely because of their antibacterial properties.  Cranberries also have high amounts of vitamin C, dietary fiber, manganese and vitamin K.

In addition to providing protection against UTIs, cranberries are known to have anti-inflammatory properties.  The phytonutrients found in these tart berries are effective in decreasing inflammation.  Anti-inflammatory properties provide us cardiovascular benefits and help prevent periodontal disease.  

Because cranberries are high in Vitamin C and other antioxidants, it helps.  Antioxidants are well known to help prevent cardiovascular disease by lowering blood pressure, and prevent cellular damage decreasing cancerous growth. 

So, don’t just make garlands and wreaths out of your cranberries, EAT THEM!