Saturday, August 22, 2009

Muffins and Marmalade

I meant to write a post today, but I made marmalade instead.

It was going to be a thought-provoking discussion about real food made with real ingredients, as opposed to shop bought fluffy cakes that fade to nothing in your mouth… but I hadn’t made marmalade yet this winter and spring is knocking on the door. Oranges will only hang around so long and the thought of going through a year without a stash of home-made marmalade is enough to induce panic.

So it is now potted up, six jars cooling in the kitchen. Not enough. I’ll have to make another batch next weekend.

I also threw together a batch of bran flake muffins, in an attempt to use up the reject crumbs at the bottom of the bran flake packet, that my husband can’t bring himself to eat in the morning. We now have the crumbs from about three packets, adding up to about half a packet of flakes. Frugal mode is in place and, as those flake crumbs are about R15 worth of nutrition going to waste, I hunted down a recipe for bran flake muffins that sounded OK, added a mashed banana and tentatively introduced them to my family. Standard bran muffins are not considered edible by my kids and I really wanted them to get along with these ones, which would solve the problem of finishing off bran flakes packets forever.

The kids were outside on the trampoline as I took the tray out of the oven. Bouncing around with trousers descended to their ankles and throwing tennis balls at each other to hysterical laughter. I tried out a muffin in advance trying to decide if it would suit their taste buds. Reckoned it might. I finished the muffin with my tea. Eventually they came in, hot and cheerful, and spotted the muffins cooling on the rack.
“What’s in them?”
“Oh, banana, cinnamon, the usual, just a different recipe” I replied airily.

They tried them, and liked them, even though they had spotted the bran flakes packet on the counter and deduced my attempted deception.
Hurray! Now I can bake off those bran flake packet reject crumbs every now and then and I have another muffin recipe to add to my list.

Bran Flake Muffins Recipe

1 cup plain flour
½ cup wholewheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoons cinnamon
1 mashed banana
2 cups bran flakes (Kelloggs in our case)
1 ¼ cups millk
1 egg
¼ cup sunflower oil

Soak the bran flakes in milk for 5 minutes. Mix in egg, mashed banana and oil.
Combine flours, baking powder, sugar, salt and cinnamon.
Stir the flour mix into the bran flake mix until just combined.
Spoon into greased 12 cup muffin tin.
Bake at 200C/400F for 18-20 minutes until lightly browned.

The kids are now all in bed, and very excited that Granny is arriving tomorrow. We'll all be getting up early to go to the airport. She should be getting on the flight about now, leaving the English late summer to come to our chilly early spring. But the sun is supposed to be shining tomorrow and the daisies will be in full flood, carpeting the field by our gate and sprinkled lavishly, like a heat haze quivering in the sunlight around the house.


  1. Good move on the muffins! I'm sure Granny will enjoy her visit, and especially marmalade on her toast ...

  2. Well done. I'm going to try that one for sure.

  3. I love a recipe that sneeks in the 'good stuff'!

  4. Oh, I love bran muffins, so if these can convince the bran haters I'm sure to love them!


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