|Strawberry Rhubarb Spice Muffins|
Last weekend, we had a perfect married weekend. When I say perfect, I mean super crazy mega-married weekend**. We got up early on Saturday, filled our travel mugs with coffee, and went to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. They're free 10am to noon every Saturday, and it's rose season. You don't have to love flowers to love this place, but if you do, it totally rocks. I strolled around for about an hour with my best friend and talked about the random things friends talk about when there are pretty things to look at. Then we walked over to the Grand Army Farmer's Market to load up on organic and locally grown everything.
Now, like always, I did a little research before I committed to a big bag of rhubarb. You may already know these things about rhubarb, but in case you don't, I hope you find this helpful during your own rhubarb purchasing and baking missions:
- Rhubarb can be very tart, so Betty's recipes call for a lot of sugar to be added to offset that. I've tried to replace and decrease sugar where I can, but it was tough because Betty is pretty much always right. The earlier in the season you get the rhubarb, the sweeter it is and the less sugar you need. Since April appears to be prime Rhubarb Season in NY, we followed Betty directions for "older rhubarb" - hence the sugar.
- Rhubarb is a good source of Vitamin A. That's good for you.
- Strawberries can have a very subtle flavor that can be hard to capture in baking sometimes. Rhubarb compliments it so well, it really would be shame to not combine them. It not only makes your baked goods a bit healthier, but it makes the flavor more vivid too.
- Don't eat the leaves - I guess they're poison. I think this is a pretty important tip, even though most of the time when you go to buy it the leaves are removed. Poison is bad.
|I just want to point out that if you ever find yourself getting a look like that from Sophia Loren - You must be doing something right.|
So enough chatter... to the rhubarb!
Strawberry Rhubarb Spice Tea Muffins
- 2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
- 3/4 Cup Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Olive Oil
- 1/3 Cup Black Tea (room temperature)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons Baking Soda
- 1 teaspoon Sea Salt (crushed)
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Cloves
- 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1 Tablespoon Orange Peal (grated)
- 1 teaspoon French Vanilla
- 2 Tablespoons Applesauce
- 1 Ripe Banana
- 1 1/4 Cups Fresh Rhubarb (finely chopped)
- 1 1/4 Cups Fresh Strawberries (sliced)
- Raw Sugar to sprinkle over the top
Heat oven to 350.
In a large bowl, blend all ingredients except Rhubarb, Strawberries and Raw Sugar with an electric hand held mixer for around 3 minutes. Gently stir in Rhubarb and Strawberries.
Put liners in your muffin pan and fill them 3/4 of the way with the batter. Then sprinkle some Raw Sugar over the top.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until you can stick a bamboo skewer into the center of the largest muffin and remove it cleanly.
These little guys are made with whole wheat flour so they are a bit heavier than your average muffin but who doesn't love a little more muffin?
* Yes this girl is me.
** We even went to brunch at Sacred Chow with our friends the always lovely and clever Nick and Susanne and had these epic vegan almond cappuccinos!