Friday, July 25, 2008

Four Foods on Friday - Baking

Thanks to Val for hosting this fun meme every week! Here are this week’s four questions. This week they’re about baking.

#1. When you need to serve desserts, do you buy them or make them? Because I have such a sweet tooth, I prefer to make my own desserts. I will buy cookies occasionally in I'm in a time crunch.

#2. When baking do you use butter, margarine or something else? I try to use what the recipe calls for. I like to use butter for the rich taste, but margarine gives a crispier texture.

#3. What meats or veggies do you cook in the oven? I love to roast veggies in the oven; I've even roasted spaghetti squash (one of my faves!). We eat a lot of baked chicken too.

#4. Share a recipe for anything that is cooked in an oven. This muffin recipe makes A LOT. I usually make 3 dozen regular size muffins and 4-5 dozen mini muffins with one batch. And I love all the variations. These are the carrot/raisin muffins.

Master Muffin Recipe - from my friends at The Duckabush Blog

* 5 cups flour (use up to two cups whole wheat, crushed cereal, or packed rolled oats if desired)
*2 to 2 1/2 cups sugar (experiment with the amount - can also vary types of sugar used)
* 1 tsp salt
* 1 tsp baking soda
* 1 Tbs.(3 tsp) baking powder
* 2 cups buttermilk (you can use part yogurt for the milk)
* 1 c. oil or melted butter (or substitute 1/2 cup apple sauce for half the oil)
* 3 eggs

Place dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir to blend. Place wet ingredients (oil, eggs, milk) in blender and blend well.

Make a well in dry ingredients in bowl, add wet mix from blender and pour into well. Stir gently to mix, add fruit and fold and stir in. Do not beat, batter should be a bit lumpy. Over stirring muffins makes them tough.

This will make 24 to 30 muffins depending on size of pans. Grease muffin pans or use muffin liners fill almost to the top and sprinkle with any of the following: sugar, cinn. sugar, chopped nuts and sugar, coconut, rolled oats and sugar etc.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 min. Cool on racks. Freeze these in Ziplocs for quick breakfasts or easy snacks.

The wonderful thing about this Master Mix recipe is it comes with an amazing list of add in possibilities. Here are the muffin variations:

Apple cinnamon: Use 3 - 4 apples (just peel and cut in chunks and throw in blender with wet ingredients, don’t over process, or chop by hand), 2 tsp cinn. and 1 cup chopped pecans.

Apple raisin - same as above but add 1 cup raisins (plump first by covering with liquid and nuking for a couple minutes. Kathy likes to use part rolled oats with the apple muffins and sprinkle the tops with a little oatmeal and sugar. )

Carrot raisin - same as above but use 5 or 6 carrots chopped in blender with wet ingredients instead of apple. Add 1 cup chopped nuts if desired.

Carrot raisin pineapple - Same as above but add one large can crushed pineapple and reduce milk to 1 1/2 cups.

Strawberry - cut up 3 cups strawberries and mix in Strawberry/White Chocolate, same as above, but add 1 cup white choc pieces

Strawberry pecan - same but add 1 cup chopped pecans

Tollhouse - add 2 cup choc chips (1 12 oz bag), 1 cup chopped nuts, walnuts or pecans, use brown sugar and add 2 tsp vanilla.

Banana - Reduce milk to 1 cup - add 5 or 6 bananas to blender - add 2 tsp vanilla and 1 cup nuts

Banana/Strawberry 1- Same as above but fold into batter, 2 cups cut up strawberries.

Banana/Strawberry 2 - Add 1 cup strawberries to the blender with 4 or 5 bananas. Stir 2 cups of cut up strawberries into batter.

Banana/Strawberry 3 - Follow either banana or banana strawberry 1, but add 1 pkg strawberry jello to wet ingredients.

Banana Choc chip - same as above but add 2 cups mini chips and 1 cup nuts if desired.

Blueberry /Orange - Peel the orange skin off one orange in very thin pieces using a potato peeler and put in the blender with the other wet ingredients. Remove the white peel remaining on the orange and cut orange into 4 or 5 chunks. Pick out the seeds and put the chunks in the blender. add the remaining wet ingredients reducing milk to 1 3/4 cups, if you are using regular milk do not add lemon juice. Blend well. Proceed as directed stirring in 2 1/2 to 3 cups blueberries.

Cranberry Orange - Same as above (no blueberries) except add 1 1/2 dried cranberries (plumped in microwave by covering with liquid and nuking for a couple minutes). Can also add 1 cup chopped nuts

Orange Pineapple - Same as above (no blueberries) but add 1 large can of crushed pineapple and reduce milk to 1 1/2 cups.

Hawaiian - Same as above but add 1 cup coconut - sprinkle tops with a little coconut.

Peanut Butter and Jelly - This is for the kids, into blender container put milk, 1 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky, you can add extra chopped peanuts if you like) and only 1/3 cup oil. Use 4 eggs and mix as usual. Fill muffin tins 1/2 full and put 1 tsp jam or jelly in center of each cup. Fill with batter almost to top and bake as usual. Chopped peanuts sprinkled on top is a nice touch.


valmg said...

I love fresh muffins! For store bought, you know who makes good muffins, Costco.
Thanks for playing FFOF!

DeeBee said...

I love all the variations with the muffin recipe.

Karen said...

Thanks for all the great muffin ideas.

clair said...

Great ideas for variations. I've got a pack of muffin pre-fix that I plan to get to soon.

corrin said...

Spaghetti squash is awesome. I add a little salt, pepper, butter, and parmasean cheese!

Ami-chan said...

Ohmigosh...all those different muffin options. That could be very devastating to my diet o.O