Saturday, June 25, 2011

Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Muffins

It's strawberry season.  Glorious Michigan strawberry season! We love strawberries around our house.  In fact, this week we headed out to a great little no-spray strawberry farm and picked 60 pounds of strawberries.  Yes 60 pounds! My mom was here visiting and more than willing to help.  Despite my two little girls who just grazed all over the strawberry patch and out of our baskets, we still ended up with 60 pounds.  I was a little shocked.  My intention had been to pick "a lot" but 60 pounds. Whoa! My mom took about 10 pounds or so home and the rest she left with us.  I was worried that I'd gotten a little to ambitious but lo and behold I quickly froze them and now I have lots of bags of beautifully frozen berries stocked away in our deep freeze to use over the next year.

A little tip if your planning on freezing your berries whole.  Wash berries and lay them out on a cooking sheet in a single layer.  Put cookie sheet in freezer for a few hours.  When berries are frozen take the cookie sheet out and put berries in a freezer bag or container.  Freezing berries this way makes it easy to freeze them quickly and whole and they won't stick together.  During the year you can toss them in smoothies, ice creams, or thaw them and use however you wish.

The other day was a cool, rainy day here in Grand Rapids, so our little family decided to stay inside in our P.J.'s all day and play and rest.  It was fantastic.  Norah loves helping me in the kitchen so we played around with making a few things in the kitchen, and because we still have lots of fresh strawberries I was on a quest to find a little sweet treat for us to make.  We'd made a Strawberry Rhubarb crisp the week before and it was so delicious.  In fact, I'm totally hooked on the strawberry rhubarb combo.  So Norah and I decided to come up with a muffin recipe that combined these two flavors.  It's fun to create with a little helper.  She will sometimes want to add a little more of this or that or taste our concoction to make sure it's tasting good.  I love it!

So we played around a bit and came up with a yummy muffin recipe.  They are vegan but not gluten free.  Baking isn't my love and I don't do it often.   So I haven't experimented a whole lot with gluten free baking.  Our family consumes such small amounts of wheat and we've never had any issues.  I do however, buy any wheat that we'll use organic because wheat is such a huge genetically modified crop these days, which is probably one of the reasons gluten intolerances are on the rise.  So all that said if your gluten intolerant perhaps you could just substitute a gluten free all purpose flour??  It's fun to experiment and create and get the kiddos involved.  So I hope you enjoy these tasty little treats!


Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Muffins

1 cup non-dairy milk
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup sucanat (unprocessed sugar cane juice--I used this instead of regular sugar)
½ cup applesauce
¼ cup oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. salt
1 cup finely chopped rhubarb
1 cup chopped strawberries
¼ cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven 375.  Mix milk and vinegar together.   Let set while you mix flours, baking soda & powder, cinnamon, and salt.  

Add sucanat, applesauce, oil, and vanilla to milk mixture.

 Mix rhubarb and strawberries into flour mixture.

Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir until combined.

Pour into greased muffin tins.  Bake 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean.

This made 18 muffins

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