O is for Oat- Two Carrot Oatmeal Muffins

O, oats. Are you excited, or scared, about the possibilities? Oatmeal is no longer absolutely off limits. A few companies have gone to great lengths and expense to produce certified gluten free oats.

Bob’s Red Mill

Cream Hill Estates

Gifts of Nature

Gluten Free Oats

Only Oats

oats photo by andreadg

The commitment from planting the seeds to the final package on the store shelf is complete. They use certified seeds, dedicated land, harvesting equipment, trucks, mills and storage facilities. And the final product is tested to rule out cross contamination.

So, is your mouth watering thinking about crunchy granola, creamy steamy hot oatmeal, a grab and go energy bar, oatmeal raisin cookies or fruit crisps?

Oats certainly are a popular flavor and texture. They add wonderful body and moistness to baked goods. Oat based muffins and breads stay fresh for days, not hours like many gluten free kinds. And oats are very filling, a great way to start the day.

Nutritionally, oats are a good choice. They are high in fiber, thiamin, iron and magnesium.

But some folks with gluten intolerance are also intolerant of even gluten free oats. I suggest that you do not try oats until you have been successful with the gluten free diet long enough to feel well.

Then try no more than 1/4 cup of gluten free oats. Do not use the usual grocery store brands. Tricia Thompson, the Gluten Free Dietitian, has tested them and they are often contaminated. If you have no troubles, you can have oats again. Only you will be able to determine if oats work for you.

In the muffin recipe below, you can use your favorite gluten free flour blend. Or punch up the nutrition and use a single whole grain gluten free flour. This time I used sorghum, teff flour works well and makes them a darker brown color.     And I have not tried it yet, but I think buckwheat would work too.

 

gluten-free-carrot-oatmeal-muffin photo by vsimon

Two Carrot Oatmeal Muffins yield: 12 muffins

1 cup oatmeal

1 cup buttermilk

2 ½ oz jar baby food carrots

1 egg

¼ cup canola oil

1 cup gluten free flour

¾ cup dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon xanthan

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon cinnamon

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

1 ½ cups shredded carrot, packed into the measuring cup

¼ cup raisins

¼ cup walnuts

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a small bowl, mix together oatmeal, buttermilk, baby food carrots, egg, and oil. Set aside for about 10 minutes to allow oatmeal to soften.

In a large bowl, mix together, flour, dark brown sugar, xanthan, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

To the flour mixture, add the oatmeal mixture, shredded carrots, raisins, and walnuts. Blend well.

Prepare muffin pans and allow batter to rest for 5-10 minutes. This gives the xanthan time to absorb some liquid and your muffins will raise better.

Scoop batter into muffin cups and bake for about 25 minutes.

Are oats trouble, or trouble free for you? Do you want more recipes with oats?

M is for Millet- Muffins Two Ways

It looks like birdseed, heck, it is birdseed. Other than being gluten free, what is so great about millet? It makes great crunchy muffins for one thing. Today we do two, one with buttermilk, one vegan.

I started with a wheat flour and whole grain millet recipe from Cooking Light. Imagine millet in a mainstream magazine like Cooking Light. They were delicious, so I had to experiment. Both versions of these whole grain gluten free muffins are equally tasty.

You can substitute only millet flour for the wheat flour. Or use a gluten free flour blend. The straight up millet flour version has more whole grain flavor. The blend is milder. Do not omit the millet seeds though. They give the muffins the fun crunch.

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buttermilk-millet-muffins photo by vsimon

Buttermilk Millet Muffins Yield 12                                                             Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

1 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1/3 cup oil

¾ cup dark brown sugar

1 ½ cup millet flour or gluten free flour blend

2/3 cup millet seeds

2 tablespoons ground flax seed meal

1 ½ teaspoon xanthan gum

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

In a small boil, whisk the wet ingredients well. That is the buttermilk, egg, oil and dark brown sugar. Sugar, any sugar, is considered a wet ingredient in baking. Weird, I know. Brown sugar does mix better with the wet ingredients than the dry ones.

In a large bowl, thoroughly combine all the dry ingredients. That is everything else.

Make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet ingredients and stir until completely mixed.

Mixing ingredients like this, wet into dry, is called the muffin method. I learned that in 7th grade Home Economics.

Allow the batter to sit for 5 minutes. The xanthan gum and the ground flax seed will hydrate, or soak up some liquid. The batter will get thicker and the muffins will rise better. That is newer knowledge, I did not learn that in 7th grade Home Ec.

Put 12 muffin papers in muffin pans. Fill the papers about ¾ full. Sprinkle tops with raw sugar crystals if desired. They are big and sparkly, a nice touch. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.

 

millet-seed-heads photo by Shi_Yali

Did you say you wanted those muffins dairy free, egg free, vegan? Can do.    I have recently discovered Amazake, a fermented rice beverage. During fermentation, the starch of the rice is broken down into sugar, naturally sweetening the drink. These muffins are a bit sweeter than the buttermilk version. Personally, I could reduce the sugar here to 2/3 cup. But my husband likes them with the ¾ cup amount.

Amazake is as thick as buttermilk. It might be a bit hard to find, and it is more pricy than buttermilk. Still, it is a great ingredient.

To replace the egg, I increased the ground flax seed meal. This adds structure just like xanthan. The first trial of these muffins, I left the xanthan in. Wow, that batter could stand alone. I cooked it anyway. The muffins were certainly edible, but they sure did not need the xanthan.

The second batch is xanthan free. Worked like a charm. And since there is no buttermilk, there is no need for baking soda either.

Also, I think this is funny, our cats LOVE these vegan muffins. One is very big and will eat any dairy, or anything with dairy, that she can get at. The other is very small and it seems she rarely eats anything. To our surprise, both cats want these muffins. They want more than just crumbs. These are just simply good, as good as the dairy version.

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dairy-free-egg-free-soy-free-millet-muffin  photo by vsimon

Dairy Free, Egg Free Millet Muffins  yield 12                                            Preheat oven to 425 degrees

1 cup amazake

¾ cup dark brown sugar

1/3 cup oil

1 ½ cup millet flour or gluten free blend

2/3 cup millet seeds

½ cup ground flax seed meal

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

In a small bowl, mix amazake, dark brown sugar, and oil.

In a large bowl, mix everything else. Let this batter sit for 5 minutes too, it will thicken. Fill muffin papers ¾ full. Top with raw sugar if you like. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.

Oh, and did I mention, nutritionally, millet is rich in the B vitamins, niacin, B6 and folic acid. And it is a good source of fiber.

Please let us know how you use millet. Or if you are familiar with Amazake.

10-21-09 This post is submitted to the GF Lifestyle Blog Carnival for November, host by Sustaining Health Holistically, a gluten free, vegan, raw blog.

B is for Buckwheat

At our house, we love breakfast for dinner. And 100% buckwheat waffles are often our go to choice. I do not use 16 different flours, just buckwheat flour. No need for gums either. I adapted a popular buckwheat and wheat pancake recipe so it is now gluten free and much, much lower in fat.
You can easily make pancakes with this recipe. I just think waffles are more fun and I do not mind taking a bit of extra time at dinner. I also like to fill all the little holes with tasty toppings. These buckwheat waffles are light and fluffy on the inside, crispy on the outside. Please do not let the color of the raw batter alarm you. It is gray with black specks. But it browns nicely as it cooks.
Like many whole foods, buckwheat is a nutrition powerhouse. One-half cup of flour is about 200 calories, only 2 grams fat, 6 grams fiber, and 7 grams high quality protein. It offers a wide range of nutrients. Notably, thiamin, niacin, B6, iron, copper, magnesium and manganese.
Best Buckwheat Buttermilk Waffles
Adapted from Buttermilk Pancakes ll at AllRecipes
Serves 2
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg
2 tablespoons oil
Preheat waffle maker. And preheat oven to 150 degrees, or the lowest setting.
Mix dry ingredients (flour through salt) in a large bowl.
Mix liquid ingredients (buttermilk though oil) a medium bowl. Add to dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.
My waffle maker makes two 4.5 inch square Belgium waffles. Belgium waffles are thicker than standard waffles. I put one third of the batter into the maker three times. You might put more or less batter in at a time. Try not to overfill the wells or the batter will ooze out and make a big aggravating mess.
Cook waffles until steam no longer comes from the waffle machine. As each waffle is done, place in oven, right on the bare rack. This keeps them crispy.
Store leftovers in the fridge or freezer. They can be warmed in the toaster on a medium setting.
My favorite way to serve them is with some chocolate chips on top, all nice and melty. Then raspberry sauce, which are simply pureed berries from our garden that we freeze to use all year round. And some syrup, either sorghum or maple. Wow, what a treat.
The Worlds Healthiest Foods reports that regularly eating buckwheat helps control blood sugar. And it lowers total serum cholesterol, reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad kind), and improves the ratio of HDL (the good kind) to total cholesterol. Not bad for a silly looking seed.
Despite the wheat name, buckwheat is gluten free. The triangle shaped seeds are called groats, or kasha if they are roasted. Buckwheat is important in eastern European and Chinese cuisine. Today we feature a central European delight, Belgium waffles. You can also make simple All-American pancakes with the same recipe.