Quinoa 106: Apple Quinoa Spelt Muffins
Carbs have become evil in our society. They are the main cause of obesity, problems with the economy, the downfall of Enron, and of course, they are at the center of the ongoing healthcare debate. There are recent allegations that carbs were indeed responsible for causing Tiger Woods to have repeated faithfulness slips, caused Israel to ban the iPad as well as being directly responsible for the huge Toyota recall.
I have an affair with carbs and I am, today, admitting it in public. Yes, I love carbs. To the rest of you who judge me, go gag on a baguette.
I do believe in a balanced diet (but one that does not include animal products) and carbs are great for you, as long as they are not refined, simple, and cause a sugar spike so high you resemble Clinton during his non-inhaling days. So, staying away from white flour, refined sugar, white rice and white pasta would certainly be a good idea (I hope I don’t have to mention processed foods with high fructose corn syrup, candy, sugary sodas etc.).
So why bake with white flour? So you can have something beautifully textured. I get it. But you can do better.
Spelt flour is delicious, nutritious and slightly nutty coupling beautifully with quinoa. Spelt also has slightly less calories and more protein than wheat. It won’t rise as beautifully as white flour, but I am sure you can live with that knowing that these little guys, lets call them Herman, are earthy homey delicacies. So I get to eat my carbs, but feel better about it.
- 1 cup of cooked quinoa
- 1 sweet apple, peeled and chopped
- 3 tablespoons flax seeds
- 6 tablespoons of water
- 1/3 cup of canola oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup (the real thing, no high fructose corn syrup knock offs)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups of spelt flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup of chopped pecans
Oil a muffin pan or use disposable muffin paper cups. You can find recycled and compostable paper cups easily nowadays. Go green.
Put the flax seeds and water in a blender and shimmy until crushed and frothy. This is actually the binding agent and replaces eggs in some vegan baked recipes. Use it anytime you would not mind a nutty earthy flavor. Place in a bowl and mix in the oil, maple syrup, apple sauce and vanilla.
In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. Pour in the wet ingredients and mix just until all ingredients come together. No more. Spelt is a delicate flour and we do not want to overmix. The batter with be rather sticky and deliciously earthy.
Fold in the quinoa and apple. Pour in the muffin tins. Its ok if you over fill. Bake for 25 minutes. Swoon. I always do.
The end result?
These are chunky, homey muffins. Definitely not for the faint at heart. Can you spot the gorgeous quinoa pearls? They are truly stunning, like a fine piece of jewelry that you get to eat.
These are perfect with a generous helping of vegan butter (unless fats are now evil). I happen to have some cashew butter on hand, so slathered some nut goo and devoured. It matched beautifully the peasant-esque of this pastry.
And this is how I do it…