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For someone who until early last year hadn’t bothered to experiment much with recipes (call it a combination of lack of time/resources/an over abundance of eating out & someone else preferring to do all the cooking), you wouldn’t know it by the state of this blog, as probably half of my recent posts have been related to food. (When I’ve written at least.) But I digress.
(Side note: two posts, back-to-back about food?! Unheard of!)
Today’s project was what promised to be delicious breakfast muffins, filled with fantastic tasting fall goodies. I’d see this recipe in the October 2012 issue of “Whole Living,” and decided it was worth a try. For those keeping score, this was my first attempt at baking in quite a while, as when you make Nanaimo bars, you don’t actually BAKE anything…
Butternut Squash, Apple and Hazelnut (And Blueberry) Muffins. (Recipe found here.) The recipe is also both vegetarian & gluten-free.
Everything was easily found at Whole Foods if we didn’t have it already. Although I did end up chopping up my own hazelnuts, as it was the one ingredient that they didn’t have pre-chopped. They have practically every other nut…it’s a little nutty. 😛
The biggest challenge I had overall, was actually figuring out how to prepare the butternut squash. As I’m just teaching myself to cook, I’ve never prepared it before – in any format.
To the internet I went!
I found a lovely site, with step-by-step photo instructions, which allowed me to easily accomplish what I needed to do.
My only complaint with the recipe actually is that it first tells you to prepare 3 cups of squash cubes, which you then steam and finally puree. Of those 3 cups, you only end up using 1/2 a cup of the puree. They do say to use it for other things, but I’m still attempting to get Mr. Kittychix to enjoy some of these fine, winter vegetables, so I’m not sure what I’ll do with the extra puree just yet. I know I’ll be using the other half of the squash this weekend when I cook for “Girls Night” with the lovely Ms. Jonika.
I originally just baked them for the normal 18 minutes, forgetting I’d added the cup of the blueberries. The instructions for the added fruit said to keep them in for an additional 5 minutes – which resulted in a perfectly clean toothpick, when I tested them.
My final verdict: definitely will make again. They’re light, fluffy and have more than a hint of sweetness, thanks to the fruit and squash. The added hazelnuts on top give them a satisfying crunch.
Now to see what Mr. Kittychix thinks….
EDIT: Success! He likes them too. Which is awesome, because I can see these easily becoming a part of my morning menu!