Asiago oat bran muffins

A couple of months ago, I blogged about oat bran muffins that I made from a recipe on a blog called domestic affair. I liked them a lot, and have made them several times since.

But it occurred to me that it might be interesting to try a savoury version. My friend Jeff, one of my walking partners, suggested that Asiago cheese would be a good addition.

I was shopping yesterday and happened to find grated Asiago, so I decided to adapt the recipe, replacing cinnamon with thyme, and adding finely chopped onion and sundried tomato instead of apples and raisins. I reduced the amount of maple syrup just a touch, and the result was both sweet and savoury – flavourful, but not overpowering. It may just be my new favourite muffin recipe.

Asiago Oat Bran Muffins (adapted from Domestic Affair’s Apple Oat Bran Muffins)

1/2 small onion, finely chopped

3 to 4 sundried tomatoes

2 cups oat bran

1 tbsp. baking powder

generous 1/4 tsp. thyme

a pinch of sea salt

1/2 cup yogourt

1/4 cup apple sauce

just under 1/2 cup maple syrup, plus canola or safflower oil to equal 3/4 cups liquid

1/2 cup shredded Asiago cheese

1. Chop onion. Soak sundried tomatoes in boiling water 2 minutes, then chop finely.

2. In large bowl, mix oat bran, baking powder, thyme and sea salt. Add yogourt, apple sauce, oil and maple syrup, and combine until mixed together and oat bran is absorbed.

3. Add onion, sundried tomatoes, and scant half-cup Asiago cheese, and mix in.

4. Spoon batter into muffin trays lined with paper muffin cups. Sprinkle each muffin with a few additional strands of cheese, if desired.

5. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven about 16 minutes, until toothpick inserted in muffin comes out clean.


Oat Bran Muffins

Much as I adore good chocolate, I eat a pretty balanced diet and like to use a variety of fruits, vegetables and other healthy ingredients when I cook and bake.

Recently, I’ve started experimenting with oat bran muffins. Oat bran is high in fibre and lowers bad cholesterol, among other beneficial effects. Image

This week, I found a recipe online that I plan to make again soon. I’ll include the link at the bottom of this post. It’s from a  blog written by Jae Steele, a Toronto-based cookbook author and holistic nutritionist whose name I wasn’t familiar with.

On my first attempt to follow her recipe, I was sure I’d read the directions wrong. There’s no flour! Also, there’s no egg.

Without eggs, and with soy yogourt, as the recipe suggests, the muffins are vegan.

Another bonus – maple syrup, not refined sugar, is the sweetener. And a third – the muffins are celiac-friendly (gluten-free if you use oat bran that is certified gluten-free).

I was skeptical about the end result, though.

However, Steele wrote that the muffins would not turn out to be hockey pucks.

She was right. The yogourt and applesauce in the recipe made for a moist batter that held together, and the chopped apple, grated orange peel and dried fruit (she used prunes, I preferred raisins) added flavour and texture.

My only quibble is the small size of the muffins. It was hard to stop at one, and we finished them very quickly.