When my kids saw me making these this morning, they asked if I was going to put them up on the blog. I told them I was planning to, and they said, "Good, people need to know about these!" I know - they don't look like much... just pale, simple, little muffins. But don't let their appearance deceive you. They are moist, flavorful, and addicting! I adapted this recipe from the More-with-Less Cookbook, by Doris Janzen Longacre. The original recipe made a bread, and you can bake it that way if you like. (Bake at same temp., but extend baking time to an hour.) We prefer the muffins because they bake up moister and quicker than the bread.
I also added wheat germ to the recipe to add extra nutrition. And I want to mention a few things about baking with whole wheat flour. First, make sure it is fresh. Whole wheat flour goes bad more quickly than all-purpose flour. If you've had whole wheat flour sitting in your pantry for longer than 6 months, I'd replace it. If you're unsure of whether or not it's still good, smell it. If it's bad, you'll know - it will smell stale and rancid. You can extend the life of whole wheat flour a bit by storing it in your fridge, but it takes up a lot of space, so I don't do that. Another thing to consider is using white wheat flour in your baking. It has all the nutrition of typical whole wheat flour, but it is lighter, less grainy.... the end product turns out better, I think. You can buy white wheat flour in regular supermarkets now. (It used to be available only in health food stores). King Arthur is the brand that I typically find in the stores. Okay, so here's what you need:
- 1-1/4 cup whole wheat flour (white wheat preferred)
- 1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 Tbsp. of grated orange zest OR 1/2 tsp. orange extract (And if you don't have either, don't worry about it, they'll still turn out fine.)
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1 egg, beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 4 mini-muffin pans with cooking spray.
Combine in a large mixing bowl: the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, wheat germ, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Next, add to the same bowl: the orange zest (or extract), orange juice, milk, oil, and egg.
Stir until the batter is smooth and everything is combined:
Spoon into greased, mini-muffin pans. You should be able to fill at least 3-1/2 mini-muffin pans, which would give you 42 muffins (or you could use standard-size muffins pans and get 22 to 24). Bake at 350 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes, (for standard-sized muffins, bake for 15 - 17 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Do not over bake - these muffins do not brown. (High-acidic batters don't brown......... well, unless you burn them.)
Now, before you clean up and put everything away, let me make a suggestion.... Grab a couple of Ziploc bags, and make your own muffin mix for those times when you are in a hurry. It won't take long. Just measure out the dry ingredients: the wheat flour, all-purpose flour, wheat germ, sugar, baking powder, and salt, and put into each bag. That's only 6 ingredients; it will take you about 5 minutes. Write on each bag, "Whole Wheat Orange Muffin Mix", and if you want to make it even easier on yourself, tape a little note onto the outside of the bag that lists what you should add to make the batter. Store the bags in the fridge.
Congratulations, you just saved yourself time and money. Why buy boxed muffin mixes when you can do it yourself? And you know exactly what ingredients you have in that bag.
So let those little muffins cool a bit, then serve. Try drizzling them with honey. Serve them with fruit for a healthy breakfast or snack. I serve them with coffee or tea when I have company. Enjoy!
This post is linked to The Country Homemaker Blog Hop at Dolly is Cooking