Rhubarb is in season but I always struggle to know what to do with it. Apart from crumble I get a bit stuck. You can’t eat it raw (well you can but it’s very tart) and it doesn’t really lend itself to anything savoury, unless you pickle it, which I ain’t got time for. So what else can you do with it?
Well as you can see, I decided to make muffins but these are no ordinary muffins, these are my attempt at a ‘healthy’ breakfast muffin, (basically I’m bored of granola and want to eat cake for breakfast).
This was a bit of a challenge though, in my experience low calorie muffins taste like sweetened dog shit, so how do I make mine taste good with only half the sugar and no butter? To be honest I don’t know, I made this recipe up with a load of things I thought might work and to my astonishment, they actually did.
I’d heard apple sauce was a good substitute for butter so I started there and built the rest of the recipe around that. I added pecans for texture, lemon zest for freshness and a cheeky pinch of spice, before slopping it all together with a bit of rhubarb and hey presto! The healthy breakfast muffin was born. I like to eat mine in a bowl with yogurt but they’re also good for scoffing on the go, depends how late for work you are.
Rhubarb breakfast muffins
Makes 12 / Hands on time 20 mins / Total time 40 mins + cooling / V ❄
You’ll need: Muffin cases and a 12 cup muffin tin
150g plain flour
115g caster sugar
50g pecans, roughly chopped
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tsp mixed seeds (you can buy seeds pre-mixed in packets at most supermarkets)
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
Zest of a lemon
2 sticks of rhubarb (150g) halved lengthways and diced
2 medium eggs
200ml semi-skimmed milk
50g apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
A pinch of mixed seeds, oats and sprinkle of sugar (optional)
These muffins will last 3-4 days in an airtight container.
❄ Suitable for home freezing once baked. Wrap individually in clingfilm and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost the night before and enjoy for breakfast the next morning.
Rule 1. Don’t over mix, over mixing will produce tough muffins.
Rule 2. Be quick! As soon as you combine the wet and dry ingredients, the chemicals in the raising agents will start to rise. Get the muffins in the oven as soon as possible to capture this rise.
Rule 3. If using fruit, add to your dry ingredients. The flour coating will help stop the fruit from sinking.
1. Preheat your oven to 210°C/190°C fan/375F/gas mark5. Line 12 muffin cases in a muffin tin. Combine the flour, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, mixed seeds, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Roughly chop the pecans and add them to the dry mixture, along with the zest of a lemon. Half the rhubarb lengthways, dice into roughy 1cm pieces and add to the dry mix. Give it a good stir.
2. In a measuring jug, add 200ml of semi-skimmed milk, before adding two eggs, apple sauce and vanilla extract. Beat with a fork until combined.
3. Make a well in the dry mixture and pour the wet ingredients straight into it. Working quickly, mix together until just combined and spoon the thick batter evenly into the muffin cases (a heaped tablespoon per muffin should do it). Sprinkle each muffin with a pinch of mixed seeds and oats and pop in the oven for 15 – 18 minutes.
4. Leave to cool and serve with a dollop of fat free yogurt or enjoy on the go.
If you’ve had a go at making my muffins or any of my recipes, I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale firstname.lastname@example.org