Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pumpkin Muffins with Apple Butter

Well, hello there! Fancy meeting you here... it's been a while, hasn't it? Last we saw each other, we were ready to welcome the summer. And look, already we're welcoming fall. To celebrate the great things about fall I thought a pumpkin muffin might be nice...not to mention an idea for what to do with all those apples you brought home from your apple picking trip!

These muffins are gorgeous, and only pack 169 calories a piece! The recipe follows "clean eating" principles (more on that in another post) so they're really good for you.

So, without further ado, I give you:

Pumpkin Muffins
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup spelt flour (use ww pastry flour if you can't get this)
1 T. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1/2 cup raw turbinado sugar or sucanat
1/2 t. salt
1 T. cinnamon
1 t. ginger
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup fat free buttermilk (lowfat is fine too...try to use a brand that doesn't have any additives like carageenan, etc.)
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (none of that Mrs. Butterworth crap!)
2 eggs
1 T. vanilla

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray or add muffin liners (and spray those too).

In a large mixing bowl, whisk all of the dry ingredients together. Combine the wet ingredients in a large liquid measuring cup or a medium mixing bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir only to combine. If you over-stir then the muffins won't rise.

Using an ice cream scoop (or a large spoon), fill each of the muffin cups with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the muffin comes out clean. Serve with some apple butter (recipe below)

Per muffin: 169 calories, 33g carbs, 1g fat, 5g protein, 4g fiber

Slow Cooker Apple Butter
4 pounds of apples (macintosh, cortland, or any other apple) - quartered (coring and peeling optional)
3/4 cup apple cider (no sugar added)
2 cinnamon sticks
1 T. cinnamon
2 T. pure maple syrup

Put the apples into the slow cooker and add the apple cider and cinnamon. Cover and cook on low for 10 hours.

Place a food mill over a large bowl; working in batches, process the apples through the food mill. Put the apple mixture - which will be a little watery - back into the slow cooker. Add the maple syrup, stir to combine, and cook on low for 8 more hours, until it's reduced. IT WILL LOOK VERY BROWN, not unlike baby poop. But it will be delicious!

If you don't have a food mill, then I suggest coring and peeling the apples, otherwise it will be a complete chore to deal with the seeds and skins. I haven't yet figured out the "serving size" and nutritionals, but it's probably about at most 20 calories per tablespoon.

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