Monday, July 9, 2012

Eggless Sunday: Strawberry Banana Quinoa Muffins

Recently, I've noticed that my breakfast routine was in serious need of some tinkering. When you walk into a Starbucks on your birthday and are greeted by all the baristas shouting "Happy Birthday, Terry" (and confusing the poor soul who walked in at the same time as you), you realize that you just might go there too often. As part of my Sunday of baking, I wanted to make a healthy scone/granola bar alternative that would go well with my morning life-breathing coffee (I may live in Texas, but I think coffee is by far the world's most important black liquid). In the end, I settled on these ambitious muffins to hopefully prevent my descent in to becoming Starbuck's "Norm".

Strawberry Banana Quinoa Muffins
Adapted from Chef In You
Servings: 24 muffins
Time: 90 minutes
Cooking before baking. Pure freaking anarchy.

1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup water
2 cups whole wheat flour
3 tsp baking powder
2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup fat free Greek yogurt
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups mashed banana
2 cups fresh strawberries, diced

Fortunately, this is one batter that's supposed to look lumpy. Fortunately that didn't stop baking partner Alex from devouring it.
  1. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Then cover and reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave covered for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork and let cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon together in a large bowl.
  4. Stir in the quinoa until it's completely covered by the flour mixture.
  5. Using a stand mixer, combine mix the sugar and oil together in a separate bowl.
  6. Add the yogurt, vanilla and mashed banana to the oil mixture until well incorporated.
  7. Drop the strawberries into the flour-quinoa mixture and stir well.
  8. Combine the flour and oil mixtures by gently stirring with a rubber spatula until just blended.
  9. Drop the batter into lined cupcake tins and bake for 20-30 minutes or until the toothpick test comes back clean.
  10. Let cool on wire racks.
  11. Shovel them down your gullet along with copious amounts of coffee. 
  12. Realize the shaking your body is doing is simply its special way of telling you how much it loves coffee.
What do you mean I don't frost them after? Hogwash!
These were some absolutely killer muffins. I reduced the amount of banana from the original recipe so that the muffins wouldn't be too mushy (an unfortunate baking consequence of the banana) and the result was a structurally sound muffin that tasted like incredible banana bread with glorious juicy bites of strawberry. These two fruity delights were further complimented by the cinnamon and vanilla for muffins that had everyone coming back for more.  I just hope the good folks at Starbucks don't send out a search party to find me this week. 

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