Buttermilk Bran Muffins

Hooray! It’s the first long weekend of this year. I can finally have time to do my new blog post, plus tons of other housework. This is one of the ways to enjoy my personal time. I mean the blogging part, not the housework.

Whenever we have time on weekends, we like to make a big deal for breakfast. I personally not a big fan of big breakfast but N likes his to be like a brunch. I enjoy the making of it. Pancakes with sausages, waffles, scones, are our favorites. Yesterday, however, instead of making the usual with butter, I, for the first time, used applesauce as a baking ingredient for muffins.I have read lots of recipes for low-fat baking using applesauce before but I have never tried it because of the skepticism about replacing butter in any type of baked goods. Butter is supposed to be the heart and soul of yummy baked goods. But inspired by the gorgeous Morning Glory Oat Muffins of Honey and Jam, I finally tried baking with applesauce and I am loving it.

This recipe of Buttermilk Bran Muffins was found on Epicurious and is originally published in Healthy Oven Baking Book of Sarah Phillips. It is a very basic recipe. You can add any ingredients like dried fruit, nuts to your liking. I added raisins, cranberries and flaxseeds. The applesauce and buttermilk really moistened the muffins. With the use of raw sugar, the flavour of the whole wheat and bran is deepened. I like how light the muffins are. For N, no matter whether there is butter of not in the muffins, he would put a large pat of margarine on it when he was eating it. So, he really did not miss the butter in the muffins at all.

Recipe:

Buttermilk Bran Muffins
Adapted from The Healthy Oven Baking Book by Sarah Phillips

Ingredients:

Nonstick canola oil spray
1 cup unprocessed wheat bran
2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup raw sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 large egg
1 1/2 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp flaxseeds
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup cranberries

Directions:

Position a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat to 350F
Lightly greased or spray twelve 2 1/4″ x 1 1/2″ nonstick muffin cups with oil.
In a medium bowl, whisk together wheat bran, flours, baking soda and salt.
In another medium bowl, using a handheld electric mixer set at high speed, beat the buttermilk, sugar, applesauce, egg, oil and vanilla until frothy, about 2 mins. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour the buttermilk mixture. Stir until just combined. Add dried fruits and flaxseeds or other nuts of your choice. Mix until just combined. Do not overmix.

Spoon batter into muffin tray. Bake until the tops spring back when pressed gently in the centre, about 20 mins. Do not overbake. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 mins before serving.