Monday, July 4, 2011

The 18-Cent Success

Before I get anywhere near the food of the day (to be literal, the past two days - I made and shared all these muffins within the last 48 hours!) I just had to show you all the latest addition to my dad's family:

Meet Gracie (AKA Twist n' Turn), the Golden Retriever puppy. All fuzz, soft as all else, and friendly as the day is long. I'll admit, she's not the yellow lab of my childhood (you can never replace your first pet!) but she'll be snug as a bug with my dad and his girlfriend. If they wind up with his girlfriend's daughter's yellow lab Sadie too - well let's just say leftovers will never be a problem at their place!

So yes, with that daily dose of "aww" out of the way, lets turn to muffins. Since one of the conditions to graduate from my program at IHN is to finish 50 hours of co-op, I've been the busy little bee working for not one (as is usual) but three different posts. So if you're wondering where I've wandered off to, yeah... that'd be it (or the garden!). My latest position is one working with Ara Wiseman, who is a holistic nutritionist, professor and brilliant speaker - and my first task for her was writing notes for an upcoming speech she was giving on making nutritious choices on a budget.

Well, pretty much living, breathing and eating nutrition (and not having a whole lot of extra cash to throw around), I was in my element. A bunch of recipes from this blog were busted out for handouts, and the very last thing I did was a whole new muffin mixture that I brought to our meeting this morning. Stuffed with carrots, sweetened only with honey, 100% whole grain and low-fat to boot, I didn't just wan
t them to be good for your body, but a hit with your senses and your pocketbook too! Lo and behold, I hadn't even finished the cost analysis yet by the time my mom had noshed on one (still warm) smeared with a dab of almond butter. With her thumbs up (and at less than 20 cents a pop) I'm thinking this one could be a winner in the penny-pinching, waist-cinching world.

Cheap n' Cheerful Carrot - Raisin Muffins
Makes 12 standard muffins @ 18 cents each!
1/2 cup low-fat milk (or milk substitute)
2 tsp vinegar
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking (not instant) oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 tbsp honey
1 egg
2 tbsp canola oil
3 tbsp applesauce
1 1/2 cups grated carrots (2 carrots)
1/2 cup raisins (optional, included in both cost and nutritional calculations)
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and grease (or line with paper cups) 1-2 muffin tins.
  2. In a small cup, mix milk and vinegar. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg).
  4. In a large bowl, beat together the honey, egg, oil, applesauce and milk mixture.
  5. Add the dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. Fold in the carrots and raisins.
  6. Bake 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
  7. These freeze well
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 114.7
Total Fat: 3.2 g
Cholesterol: 15.9 mg
Sodium: 85.6 mg
Total Carbs: 20.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.1 g
Protein: 2.8 g

What's your favourite "cheap n' cheerful" healthy recipe?

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