Saturday, June 14, 2008

Pantry Cleanup Muffins and Toronto With Dad

Well, I'm back from my "worldly" travels down to Chinatown and Kensington market! The outing with my dad was everything I could have oped for and more, the two of us had a ton of fun poking around the "alternative" shops in Kensington (where we picked up this funky bread knife and awesome CD, not to mention finding enough local artwork and vintage clothes to stock my house many times over!), with a delicious sushi lunch at the same little spot Andrew and I went to in January.

In Chinatown, not only did we get the experience of deciphering labels and communication barriers at the groceries (none of which we bought, though I was tempted by the Sugar Apples), but we also took a look (read: 1 1/2 or so hours of combing) through Tap Phong Trading Company, where we were awed by stockpots taller than me, and woks easily 2 ft across! I did admit to being tempted by an ice cream maker like this one, but instead settled on a food mill (for tomato sauce again this year!) and a pocket thermometer that I needed for my Food and Nutrition Management course in the Fall.

I was so happy to be able to spend the day with my dad, talking about everything and anything and just bonding! It's not an often occurrence but when it does happen it's special. Tomorrow for Father's Day, the newly graduated Andrew and I are taking him golfing, but nothing's more special than a girl and her dad just hangin' out!

I suppose you want to hear about those muffins I hinted at a few days back?? Okay, you're on! These were a simple product of an overstocked pantry, a baking bug and some very frazzled employees at ExxonMobil (yes, these are the poor people under one of the big-ass corporations gouging us $1.38 / litre everytime we fill up. No, I can't help you with a discount, and neither can they. We're all paying through the nose.). One of my mom's co-workers had been burning the midnight oil a bit more than usual and after the taste test rounds of the birthday cupcakes he hinted that something more "wholesome" would be appreciated. There was mention of protein powder as well (though I don't know if it was a joke or not)... but since I don't buy into the supplements thing I decided to make whole grain banana muffins with honey-roasted soynuts, maple syrup and chocolate chips instead! Hey, chocolate's a health food, right?? Maple syrup and bananas are healthy and natural and the soynuts have some crunchy protein... so, yes, these are my self-affirmed contribution to the staffers!

I used more of that potato milk in these muffins (I'm still desperately trying to use it up, and I do have some more bread ideas!), which I think helped make them so moist. Throwing in a touch of All-Bran cereal holds onto the moisture too, and without any added oils or butter they're not too harsh on the "bottom" line (yes, corny, I know. Give me some leeway here!). Chic or not, these muffins are here to stay!

Choco - Banana Crunch Muffins
Makes 16ish
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tbsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup All-Bran cereal
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup fat free plain soymilk (or potato milk, or skim milk)
2 overripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup honey-roasted soy nuts
  1. Preheat oven to 400F, grease 16 muffin cups.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda cinnamon and All-Bran in a bowl.
  3. Separately, mix the syrup, vinegar, vanilla, soymilk, and bananas.
  4. Gently mix the wet ingredients into the dry, adding more soymilk if necessary, just until mixed.
  5. Fold in the chocolate chips and soy nuts.
  6. Bake 20 minutes.
  7. Cool 3-5 minutes in tins, then turn out onto a rack and cool completely.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 98.1
Total Fat: 2.3 g
Cholesterol: 0.2 mg
Sodium: 14.2 mg
Total Carbs: 18.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8 g
Protein: 2.5 g


  1. I can't believe you're complaining at $1.38 a litre of petrol, here in the UK it's around £1.25 UK pounds or about $2.50 a litre!

    The oil delivery drivers are now on strike which has meant garages have run out of fuel because of panic buying and the shoops aren't able to say when they will next get deliveries of essentials like milk and bread.

  2. Sounds like you had a wonderful Fathers Day and he was spoiled:D


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