Happy National Pecan Day!

Not to toot my own horn or anything, but today I made amazing muffins.

I had 5 neglected, and therefore overly-ripe, bananas sitting in my kitchen begging me to turn them into something delicious. I could have gone with my standby banana protein muffins, but decided instead to throw caution to the wind and whip up a batch with quinoa, chia seeds and pecans instead.

And when posting about my new concoction on twitter I discovered it is National Pecan Day, how serendipitous! So although the day is almost over, I won’t judge if you extend the celebration into tomorrow so you can whip up a batch for yourself.

Banana Pecan Quinoa Muffins

Serves 12

Wet ingredients

2 overly-ripe bananas, mashed

1 egg

4 TBS butter

1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (can sub vanilla extract)

1/2 cup cooked quinoa

Dry ingredients

1 cup white whole wheat flour (I like Bob’s Red Mill, but regular whole wheat or unbleached white would work too)

1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

3 TBS chia seeds

1/2 cup pecans, chopped

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In medium bowl, cream brown sugar and butter. Add remaining wet ingredients and mix until combined.

In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients. Add wet to the dry and mix well. Scoop into 12 lined & sprayed with non-stick cooking spray muffin tins, or silicone muffin cups, and bake 35-40 minutes.

Try to allow to cool before eating.

What is your favorite way to eat pecans?

Pumpkin Scruffins

I love scones. Especially freshly baked ones. This weekend I whipped up a batch of cranberry yogurt scones for my co-worker, who just got back from maternity leave.

I was craving some for myself, but since I had already made these last week, I started searching for a suitable replacement. I eyed my Costco-size can of Libby’s pumpkin, and determined it needed to be incorporated. Unfortunately, none of the pumpkin scone recipes were striking my fancy. Fortunately, I really enjoy playing with recipes and making them my own.

What resulted from my adaptions wasn’t quite a scone, and wasn’t quite a muffin. Therefore I dub these: Pumpkin Scruffins. They are scrump-diddily-umptious! Even my pumpkin-hatin’ hubs loved them. And I may, or may not, have eaten two of these on Easter.

Pumpkin Scruffins

Adapted from this recipe
Serves: 8
Nutritionals: Cal: 231, Carb: 34g, Fat: 9g, Pro: 4g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 14g

Ingredients

3/4 cup whole wheat flour

3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1/4 cup white granulated cane sugar

6 TBS cold butter

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp vanilla bean paste (can sub 1 tsp vanilla or the insides of one vanilla bean)

6 oz Stoneyfield Organics 0% French Vanilla yogurt

1/3 cup raisins

1/2 cup canned pumpkin

Directions

Preheat oven to 425.

Sift together: whole wheat flour, white flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt & pumpkin pie spice.

Add cold butter and mix until incorporated, (do not be afraid to use your hands).

Add vanilla bean paste, yogurt, raisins and canned pumpkin.

Form into a ball and flatten on a greased cookie sheet, roughly 1/2 inch thick.

Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Cut with a knife (or a pizza cutter – this worked great!) and transfer to cooling rack.

Who says pumpkin is just for fall? Pumpkin is my favorite flavor year round! Enjoy 🙂

Whole wheat banana protein muffins

Today was one of those days when I really hated being a grownup. Last night our furnace stopped working. The hubs called the company we purchased said furnace from, a mere 4 months ago, and made a noontime appointment. He ran off to Lowe’s to pick up chicken coop building supplies before the appointment. While attempting to leave Lowe’s, he discovered the Volvo’s battery was dead. Insert father-in-law, Rob, to the rescue. Rob graciously drove into town to move all supplies from our Volvo to his truck in order to reach the dead battery. Yes, our battery is where one would normally find a spare tire. Why? Volvo thinks they are different/fancy/cool?

I hate you Volvo.

After finishing* the laundry, finishing up with the furnace repair man, and getting chicken coop materials home, I decided a little baking might improve my mood.

*a job that is never actually finished

I had these muffin liners sitting in my muffin sheet for two weeks. I hadn’t felt the inspiration to either bake muffins, or to put away the liners.

Yes, those would be Halloween liners my friends.

I took one look at my fruit bowl and decided something needed to be done with these sad looking nanners.

Inspiration finally struck, and I started combing the internet for a recipe that only required me to shop in my pantry.

I found one, but it didn’t look too fantastic. Halfway through the process of pulling items out of my pantry I remembered I only had whole wheat flour. Since my oven was already in the process of pre-heating, and I wasn’t in the mood to run to the store, I decided to give it a go.

I didn’t have high hopes, as I prefer to blend my whole wheat and white flour together. But I’m glad I did, because these muffins are so light and fluffy you would never guess they were whole wheat! I added so many additional ingredients to the recipe I found, it is almost comical to say I adapted the recipe. But, here is the original recipe in case you don’t feel like all the add-ins.

Whole wheat banana protein muffins

Makes 18 muffins

Nutritionals: Cal: 145, Carb: 28g, Fat: 2g, Pro: 6 g

Ingredients

4 very ripe bananas

2 eggs

3/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup white sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

2 scoops GNC whey protein powder, unflavored (you could also use vanilla or chocolate or strawberry for a fun change)

2 TBS chia seeds

Directions

In medium bowl mash bananas, add vanilla, applesauce and eggs. Blend well.

In large bowl combine whole wheat flour, white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking soda and protein powder.

Mix wet into dry.

After combined fold in chia seeds.

Distribute evenly in muffin liners,

and bake 20-25 minutes, (until toothpick is inserted and comes out clean).

Transfer to wire rack to cool. I use the same toothpick to move my muffins.

Enjoy plain, with peanut butter, nutella, cream cheese, or whatever your heart desires.

Mmmm, nanner-nugget.