The rich nutty aroma of these muffins cooking in the oven is most certainly an incentive to leap roll out of bed on a cold, drizzly morning. Or, you know, get out of bed to actually make them because either everyone else is too lazy or you’re flying solo. In fact the latter is a far better situation to be in, as you will want to scarf savour the all twelve of them in one sitting. The smell conjures up images of netball carnivals, cross country races, lunch box snacks and lazy weekend afternoons – basically my childhood encased in one moist yet fluffy muffin. They were – and still are – Dad’s go-to food to bake when we were expecting guests/visiting. Perhaps my sister and I were just a little strange as kids – I remember being confused at looks of horror on our friends faces when they realised that there was no chocolate, no jam, and heaven forbid no conventional sugar in their ‘supposed’ afternoon treat. My sister and I loved them. The honey, along with the sultanas, adds more than enough sweetness, just proving that you can’t judge before you try! Feel free to substitute the honey with rice sugar or agave syrup, though I do think that it provides a distinctive (yet mellow) flavour.
There is certainly no guilt-infested ‘wasted’ calories scenario with these muffins. Low-GI and bursting with fibre, they are a suitable wholesome breakfast option or mid-morning/afternoon snack. And one that whispers in your ear “eat-me whilst I’m still warm”. I desperately want to try using a jumbo-muffin tin in order to make a mega breakfast muffin – the mere thought of it has me already sighing in pleasure.
Did I mention that they are also super easy to whip up? If working at a steady pace, they take just over 30min from their hideously mucky brown origins to being broken in half, smothered in butter and devoured.
Oh, a note on emulsifying the liquids – don’t be egotistical like me and use a balloon whisk, thinking that you totally have enough arm power. It will take forever. Instead, use a rotary egg whisk (these muffins are the only thing we use ours for) and save yourself the time and mess! I think I’m still wiping smears off the walls.
All that’s left to say is get in there!
Dad’s Bran Muffins
Makes 12 muffins.
¾ cup natural bran
¾ cup All-Bran
½ cup boiling Water
½ cup honey
1 cup milk
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 cup wholemeal flour
1¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
¼ tsp salt
¼ cup desiccated coconut
½ cup sultanas
Pre-heat oven to 180C and grease a 12-hole, 1/3 cup capacity muffin tin.
In a large bowl, mix and let stand the bran, All-Bran and boiling water.
Meanwhile, beat together the egg, honey, milk and oil until well combined. Add to the bran mixture and mix thoroughly.
Sift together the flour, bi-carb, coconut and salt and gently fold into the bran. Fold in the sultanas.
Fill muffin molds (to a few millimetres from the top) and bake for 15 minutes or until just firm on top.
Place muffin tin on a wire rack and leave to cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pan by running a butter knife around the edges and gently prising upwards. Eat whilst warm or leave to cool completely.
Source: Dad’s ‘holy’ recipe folder.