Thursday, March 14, 2013

Steel Cut Oatmeal & Blueberry Muffins

A few weeks ago I was cleaning off my desktop and going through lots and lots of old photos.  The realization that I primarily shoot everything on a stark white background became very apparent.  When I set out to make these muffins I knew I wanted to try photographing them against a dark backdrop.  I have a big piece of plywood that's been painted with chalkboard paint that I usually use for a semi-dark background (see here).

As these muffins were baking I was shooting a couple of test set ups.  The best setup I found was propping up a poster board and draping a black maxi dress over it (it was the only black cloth I could find in the whole apartment). It ended up working great! I'm super happy with the results and excited to start playing around with dark photos.  I will definitely have to go buy a square of black fabric to use instead though, as I was so nervous the whole time about getting food on my dress (it costs $2 a load to do laundry in our building so I'm not trying to spend $4 in quarters on washing blueberry juice out of my dress)

My brother gave me this cute mini cake stand for Christmas and I have yet to use it so I decided to make muffins.  We also had an abundance of blueberries in our fridge this week. As I was thinking about the muffins I wanted to make I knew I wanted them to be 'healthy' muffins. Something you feel good about eating in the morning for breakfast and that aren't full of sugar.  After reading some articles about sugar being 'toxic' and all the serious health problems it can lead to I've been trying to keep a watchful eye on my intake.  Sugar is literally in everything and trying to reduce my intake has been a challenge, especially since I'm a candy fanatic.  The only added sugar here, besides the sugar contained in the milk and fruit, is the maple syrup and even with the addition of the syrup the muffins only come out with 8g of sugar per muffin.  The oatmeal helps bulk them up and give them a nice chewy texture, the banana makes them moist and the blueberries add that hit of sweet and tart.

Steel Cut Oatmeal & Blueberry Muffins
lightly adapted from Recipes for Health

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana (about one banana.  Alternatively, you could use 2 eggs)
  • 1 1/3 cup milk (I used 1%)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 cup cooked steel cut oats
  • 1 cup blueberries
  1. Mix whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Mix banana, milk and syrup together.  Add to the dry ingredients. Stir until just mixed.
  3. Fold in cooked oats and blueberries.
  4. Cook for 20-25 minutes at 375 degrees. Makes 12 muffins. 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Vintage Recipes: Grapefruit Coconut Cake

Here is the second installment in the vintage recipe series I'm doing for Eat Boutique.  The first recipe was a blueberry buckle inspired by my grandmother's.  This recipe's inspiration came from the fact that we are in the middle of citrus season and I love the pairing of citrus and coconut. And also that I am obsessed with every shade and variation of light pink/grapefruit :)

The original recipe was made from a box mix with many 'fake' additions so I revamped it to make it all from scratch.  The result was a sweet and tart cake, a nice addition to a sunny winter afternoon when you are longing for spring days.  Click on over to Eat Boutique to see the recipe + post!