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Posts Tagged molasses

Rhubarb Muffins

Rhubarb MuffinsTHE VERDICT:

Our third trip to the farmers’ market this year yielded yet another bunch of rhubarb to experiment with. I wanted to try another savoury recipe and thought muffins would be a good choice, so I turned to my new favourite cooking blog (besides Tonight’s Dinner, of course), Closet Cooking, for a recipe. Because we wanted the muffins to last the whole week and there are two of us, we doubled the recipe, which resulted in a happy accident. We did not have enough maple syrup for doubling the recipe (I forgot to check our syrup levels before making the decision to double everything), so I decided to use half syrup and half molasses and the results were quite tasty. So tasty in fact that I would probably replace the maple syrup with molasses when making these muffins again, and I would definitely make them again.

They are still moist even with the yogurt and banana substituting in for butter or oil. I love the whole wheat and oatmeal that is included as they add earthy flavour and make the muffins a heartier breakfast item. And, of course, the tart rhubarb adds a nice punch of fruit flavour.

If you want to try it yourself…

THE RECIPE:

Rhubarb Muffins (source: Closet Cooking; original recipe)

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Upside-down Rhubarb Gingerbread

Rhubarb GingerbreadTHE VERDICT:

Continuing with my rhubarb inspired baking, I decided to move away from crisp territory and modify a recipe for Upside-down Apple Gingerbread. The switch was pretty easy. I simply replaced the 3 small red apples cut into eighths that the original recipe called for with 4 cups of sliced rhubarb (about 1.5lbs. or 4 large stalks). The end result is delicious though I think I prefer the original recipe a little bit more. While fairly easy to prepare, this recipes does involve several steps, so I recommend trying it out on a weekend when you are less pressed for time.

A couple of little tricks to share:¬†Ginger will peel and grate much more easily if you freeze it.¬†If you measure the oil first, the molasses won’t stick to the inside of the measuring cup when you pour it out.

If you want to try it yourself…

THE RECIPE:

Upside-down Gingerbread (source: Shape magazine)

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

2 Tbsp. plus 1/2 cup brown sugar

3 small red apples, cored and cut into eighths OR 4 cups sliced rhubarb

1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 cup canola oil

2 eggs

1/4 cup molasses

1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger

1/2 cup buttermilk

  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • Place a 10-inch skillet over medium heat and add butter. Stir in 2 Tbsp. brown sugar. Cook 2 minutes until sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is bubbling.
  • Arrange fruit in a single layer in the skillet. Cook 5 minutes, then turn over and cook 5 more minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, stir together remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar, oil, eggs, molasses and fresh ginger.
  • Add half the flour mixture, then buttermilk, then the remaining flour mixture.
  • Pour batter over fruit and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool in skillet for 5 minutes. Loosen edges with a knife and invert onto a serving platter. Serve warm.

Makes 8 servings.

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Chocolate Chip Cranberry Granola Bars & Sparkling Iced Tea

Granola Bar and Sparkling Iced TeaTHE VERDICT:

Both of these recipes make for a tasty afternoon snack though the beverage is a much healthier option if you are counting calories. The granola bars are amazing, but they are a problematic snack. The original recipe should be prepared in a 9 x 9 cake pan and then cut into 16 pieces, leaving you with a miniscule portion size that packs a whopping 157 calories without filling you up. Because we cut larger, more filling bars, I’ve doubled the original recipe, so that we can eat these as snacks all week long. We won’t make this recipe often as it is not the healthiest choice (though it is still preferable to the heavily processed granola bars available at the grocery store), and in the future we may try to make healthier substitutions for some of the ingredients (e.g. pumpkin seeds instead of chocolate chips).

The iced tea is extremely refreshing and I am looking forward to making several variations of this recipe over the warm summer months. The original recipe only serves two and is designed to be served shortly after making it, so I altered things a little bit. I just made a jug of extremely strong cranberry-raspberry tea and then diluted it with club soda whenever I made a glass. This would be a great drink to serve at a summer barbecue.

THE RECIPES:

Chocolate Chip Cranberry Granola Bars (source: Spark Recipes; original recipe)

Sparkling Iced Tea (www.canadianfamily.ca; original recipe)

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