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“A low-fat muffin that tastes as good as it looks”, this healthy banana breakfast muffin from BBC GoodFood has the added benefit of being packed with a generous dose of antioxidants in the form of blueberries.

BANANA & BLUEBERRY MUFFINS

Ingredients:

300g self-raising flour

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

100g light muscovado sugar

50g oats + 1 tablespoon for topping

2 medium bananas, mashed

284ml carton buttermilk

5 tablespoons light olive oil

2 egg whites, room temperature

150g fresh blueberries

Method:

  • Heat the oven to 180C/ fan 160C/ gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper muffin cases.

  • Tip the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Hold back one tablespoon of the sugar.

  • Mix the remainder with flour and 50g oats. Make a well in centre. Mash bananas until smooth.

  • Stir the buttermilk, oil and egg whites into the mashed banana mixture until evenly combined.

  • Pour the liquid mixture into the well and stir mix quickly and sparingly with a wooden spoon.

  • The mixture will look lumpy and may have the odd fleck of flour still visible. Do not over-mix.

  • Tip in the blueberries and give it just one more stir. Divide the mix between the muffin cases.

  • Sprinkle top with the final tablespoon of oats and rest of the sugar. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.

  • Muffins will have turned dark golden. Cool for 5 minutes in the tray before lifting out to cool.

  • Baked muffins will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to a month.

Banana Blueberry Muffins

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This cereal muffin recipe, adapted from Kellogg’s, is a great way to use up any leftover cereal especially that family value box with 20% extra you picked on whim during supermarket sales and forgot to eat till it got dangerously close to the expiry date. I had a little over half a box of Kellogg’s Special K which I used here along with a generous handful of soft Seeberger Cranberries and these nutritious muffins had nothing to do with the sickening, dry ‘sawdust’ taste I have experienced with store-bought bran muffins. Try these low-fat, high-fibre delights to start your day on a healthy note or turn them into mini muffins so that you have a handy snack that can to be enjoyed any time of the day.

SPECIAL K CEREAL MUFFINS

Ingredients:

1 cup all purpose flour

7 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon kitchen salt

2 cups Kellogg’s Special K cereal

1 cup lukewarm water

4 tablespoons milk powder

1 egg, room temperature

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup soft cranberries

Method:

  • Sift flour and stir it together with sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and set it aside.

  • In another bowl, combine cereal, water and milk. Let stand about 2 minutes until cereal softens.

  • Add egg, oil and buttermilk and beat well. Add flour mixture and cranberries and fold into batter.

  • Portion the muffin batter evenly in twelve 2 1/2-inch muffin pan cups coated with cooking spray.

  • Bake muffins at 400° F about 20 minutes until golden brown. Cool in pan for about 10 minutes.

  • Remove from pan and cool slightly on a wire rack before serving. Store in an airtight container.

Kellogg’s Special K Cereal Muffins

These delicate, rather feminine, cupcakes with their pretty swirl of pink strawberry butter cream are simply perfect for a princess themed birthday party or a baby shower. The recipe from Cooking Classy rightly describes these gorgeous cupcakes as “overflowing with strawberry flavor” since it uses both strawberry puree and chopped fresh strawberries, which gives a slight pinkish tinge to the batter. I chose to omit the food coloring entirely but you can add few drops if you want a more vibrant shade of pink. The super creamy frosting holds a fair amount of reduced fruit puree such that you can almost call it healthy and it is so good that you might end up liking the bowl, and maybe the beaters as well!

STRAWBERRY CUPCAKES

Ingredients:

For the Strawberry Cupcakes

1 2/3 cup cake flour, unsifted

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon kitchen salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg + 2 large egg whites

1/3 cup fresh strawberry puree

1/4 cup cultured buttermilk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

5 drops red food coloring

3/4 cup diced strawberries

For the Strawberry Frosting

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons strawberry puree

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1/4 cup salted butter, room temperature

2 1/2 to 2 3/4 cups powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 drops red or pink food coloring

Whole strawberries for topping

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift flour into a mixing bowl, add baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • Whisk for 20 seconds and set it aside. Whip butter and granulated sugar until it turns pale and fluffy.

  • Add egg and egg whites, 1 at a time. Whisk together buttermilk, 1/3 cup strawberry puree and vanilla.
  • Working in 3 separate batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture, add 1/3 of the flour mixture.

  • Alternate flour with half of the buttermilk mixture and mix it just until combined after each addition.
  • Fold in the diced strawberries. Divide batter among 12 paper lined muffin cups, filling each to 3/4 full.

  • Bake in preheated oven 20 to 23 minutes till toothpick inserted into center of cupcake comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the muffin tin several minutes, then transfer to rack to cool completely before frosting.

  • For the Strawberry buttercream frosting, add 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons strawberry puree to a saucepan.
  • Heat mixture over low heat. Simmer, stirring occasionally until reduced to about 2/3 to 3 tablespoons.

  • Pour the reduced puree into a small bowl, then freeze until cool and stir occasionally for even chilling.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, whip unsalted and salted butter till it turns very pale and fluffy.

  • Add 1 cup powdered sugar and fold in reduced strawberry puree, vanilla extract and red food coloring.
  • Add remaining powdered sugar and mix until frosting is pale and fluffy, adding extra sugar if required.

  • To assemble cupcakes, place a small mound of small diced strawberries on top over center of cupcakes.
  • Pipe frosting around and over berries then decorate with a whole small strawberry. Makes 12 cupcakes.

Strawberry Cupcakes

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