21 July 2012

Muffins as a Creative Outlet

As Julia Cameron wrote in The Artist’s Way, paraphrasing another artist, when you’re out of the studio for three days, by that third day, you’ll do anything to get back to your art and nobody better stand in your way. I came home from my first week of work on Friday (a yearlong fellowship) and made muffinz. Zucchini muffins.

Zucchini Blueberry Muffins
Modified from a zucchini bread recipe from my mother

half of 1 giant or 1 medium zucchini, seeds removed and shredded (about 1 cup)
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 cup water plus 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

1 cup sticky rice flour
1/4 cup King Arthur Flour Ancient Grains Flour Blend
3/4 cup buckwheat flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 cup walnuts, broken into bits
1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen

1/2 cup non-dairy milk (I used original ricemilk)
1 tablespoon mild vinegar (I used white wine vinegar)
1/3 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  Toast the walnuts for 8 minutes in the preheating oven on a piece of foil (optional).  Oil a 12-well muffin tin.

In a sieve or colander over a large bowl, mix the zucchini, sugar and salt, and let drain while you assemble the rest of the recipe.  In a small measuring cup, whisk together the flaxseed and water and set aside.  In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.  Stir in the blueberries and walnuts.  Press the excess moisture from the zucchini and set aside.  Remove the liquid from the zucchini draining bowl (either drink the zucchini juice or don’t, but you won’t need it for the recipe).  In the zucchini draining bowl, combine the flaxseed, non-dairy milk, vinegar, agave, oil, and zucchini.  Add the dry to the wet and mix until just combined (watch for dry spots and add more non-dairy milk, one tablespoon at a time, if the batter seems especially dry).  Transfer to the muffin wells.  Bake 20 minutes or until browned on top and a toothpick inserted into a muffin (not into a blueberry!) comes out clean.  Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then loosen muffins with a butter knife, transfer to a rack, and let cool entirely.

Energy muffinz!

Last Sunday I made black bean brownies in my hearts pan.

The Vitamix makes short work of the beans.  I would’ve eaten the bean puree straight up—sweet hommos!  

When I say things like that my fashion-forward aunt says I’m practicing for Fear Factor.

I used the summer squash seed butter in pasta with spinach, cannellini beans, and pesto.  I made brown rice linguine, drained it, and added the sauces, beans, and a bag of frozen spinach.

I’m on the vampire diet because I don’t have time to chew breakfast and lunch (and I have a Vitamix).  Or maybe it’s the vegan zombie diet: fluids and grrrrrraaaaaaaiiiiinnnnnsssssss, for two meals a day. 

Videre licet: breakfast of oatmeal, non-dairy yoghurt or milk, and green juice

and my cherry-stained fingers as I prepared cherries for my lunch smoothie. 

Nom on.  Since I’m consuming the same amount of calories, I’m probably not going to lose weight, but I’m not going to feel sick from eating quickly and not chewing my food well during short lunch breaks.  I know I’m typing myself into a danger zone, but I leave you with this: sitting all day in front of a computer combined with short breaks that associate not-work with food is why we—America—are digging ourselves into an early grave.  My dream is to be a health coach or naturopath to help others on the journey find balance in how we think about ourselves, our food, our environments, and our spiritual dimensions.

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