5.27.2012

A memorable muffin.


There is a cafe in an area of Toronto called Kensington Market.  When I lived there I used to spend my Saturdays getting a deliciously hot and strong cappuccino and walking from stall to stall to see the various fruits and vegetables grocers had to offer.  My morning was finished with a snack or lunch at an amazing vegan food spot called Urban Herbivore.
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Now this is the type of cafe I would want to run -- if I wanted to run a cafe, that is.  The place works because it offers a simple and fresh menu, often using overlooked ingredients that add that perfect little touch.  They even make their own bread for sandwiches -- it's those little details that make a place like this so memorable.
One of my favourite items from this cafe is a sweet potato muffin.  This is a serious muffin -- not one of those cake-like, sweet and fatty offerings drummed up by many bakeries and cafes.  In addition to using sweet potatoes, these muffins have whole grains and just enough sweetness.
This is my version of their muffin -- sweet potatoes, ripe bananas, sweet crimson raisins, wholegrain spelt oats, wholemeal flour, olive oil and agave syrup.  Definitely try this recipe out and if you're ever in Toronto, definitely visit Urban Herbivore - you won't be disappointed!

*side note: this blog does not advertise -- I am not paid to write about or recommend any of the restaurants or food products mentioned here -- I simply provide my opinion or take on things.

sweet potato muffins**
makes 12 muffins

1 cup spelt oats
1/4 cup crimson raisins (or any other kind)
2 ripe bananas, mashed 1/3 cup olive oil
1 egg, lightly beaten 
1/4 cup dark agave syrup
1 and 1/2 cup wholemeal flour
1 and 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamon
1 and 1/4 cup sweet potato, cubed, cooked and cooled

Preheat oven to 175 degrees C.
Place oats and raisins in a medium bowl and add enough boiling water to cover. Let soak about 10-15 minutes.  For wet ingredients, mix mashed bananas, olive oil, egg and agave syrup in a large bowl.  For the dry ingredients, place flour, baking soda and spices in a bowl and mix.  Strain soaked oats and raisins (rinse with cold water until cooled) and add to wet ingredients. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix carefully - don't over-mix!, then add in cooked sweet potatoes.  At this point if mixture is too dry, add either 1/4 cup yoghurt or 1/4 applesauce.

Place batter into muffin tin and bake about 30 minutes or until knife inserted comes out relatively clean (because you're using bananas you want to keep some moisture) Take out and let cool - serve with cream cheese - enjoy!

*note this is not a vegan muffin but if you want to make it so, just remove egg and replace with apple sauce.