BIRD FOOD: oat bran muffins

i have officially found my favorite muffin to make from scratch.  channing and i have made a new batch every monday afternoon for the past 3 weeks.  she loves them as much as i do.  and, now that i have a couple of the ingredients (that i don't normally have in the house, like oat bran and bran flakes), they are so simple and easy to make.  the recipe is from one of my favorite new cookbooks supernatural everyday by heidi swanson.  there are so many yummy recipes in this book.  it is a must have for your cookbook collection! 

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BRAN MUFFINS

via Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

Ingredients:
– 2 large eggs
– 1 cup buttermilk OR plain yogurt (i use plain greek yogurt)
– 1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
– 1/4 cup pure/organic maple syrup
– 1/2 cup unprocessed wheat bran OR oat bran (oat bran is my favorite for this and i purchase the bob's red mill brand)
– 1.5 cups plain, unsweetened bran flakes cereal
– 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (i also use bob's red mill brand for this)
– 1/4 natural cane sugar
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 1 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
– 1 tsp fine-grain sea salt

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees with a rack in the middle of the oven. Generously butter a standard 12-cup muffin pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, and maple syrup. Sprinkle the bran and cereal across the top, stir, and allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes.

In the meantime, in a separate small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Sprinkle the dry ingredients over the top of the wet and stir until just combined. Immediately fill each muffin cup three-quarters full.

I have been adding a little something extra special to the tops of these muffins before I bake them and we really love it.  I squeeze a little orange or tangerine juice over the tops then sprinkle a bit of flax seed and grated orange peel over the top.  This week we also added a little sprinkle of course natural sugar too.  

Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until the edges of the muffins begin to brown and the tops have set. Let cool for 5  minutes in the pan, then turn the muffins out of the pan to cool completely on a wire rack.

We have found these to be especially yummy when served warm with a spread of good quality raspberry preserves, such as Bonne Maman

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