Monday, August 29, 2016

Plantain Muffins - #MuffinMonday

I may be the slowest person in the kitchen ever. No matter how much I try to streamline the process, I seem to always end up spending all day in the kitchen. The other day my baking to-do list included potato rolls, Food Lust People Loves's carrot cake, brownies, and these plantain muffins. Knead, autolyze, cook, mash, mix, shape. It was a very long day. When I grabbed one of these muffins and took a bite, the achy feet did not seem to matter anymore. They were amazing.

When I told my friend that I was going to make plantain muffins, she seemed a bit skeptical. But I persisted. We all enjoy banana muffins, why not plantain muffins? How could that possibly be bad? It cannot be. That's the answer to that.  Plantains are a breakfast favourite here. I love them twice-fried aka tostones. But the really ripe ones aren't the best for tostones as flattening them gets a bit messy. But now I have found the perfect use for them, that is, if I am not just eating them raw or fried once.

As usual, be sure to check out all the other Muffin Monday recipes below!

Plantain Muffins
Yield - ~8 muffins

180 grams overripe plantain (I got this from 1 plantain)
100 grams brown sugar
1 egg
60 millilitre (4 tablespoons) oil
125 grams flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 F and thoroughly grease the wells of a muffin pan.
Mash the plantain with the one cup of sugar. Whisk together the egg and the oil then add to plantain mixture.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.
Slowly combine the wet and dry mixtures, mixing until just combined. Don't overmix!
Fill each well about 2/3rds then bake approximately 18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool and devour.

#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all our of lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board.

Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday, can be found on our home page.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Spicy Herb Monkey Bread - #BreadBakers

I have been struggling creatively for the last few months. I kept telling myself that I am just stressed out by all the things that have been happening. Additionally, there's the lack of availability of ingredients that I'd like to use. But the reason finally hit me as I was falling asleep last night. Yes, there's a fair amount of stress but that usually gets me in the kitchen more. Baking is after all, therapy. My real issue is that I am not being inspired by the things around me, the ingredients available right here. I keep thinking in terms of American ingredients, closing my eyes to what is available.

Take for example, this spicy monkey bread that I made for this month's Bundt Bakers. I used cayenne pepper in the herb oil. It was really spicy and absolutely delicious. But you know what would have been great too? Scotch bonnet peppers! Scotch bonnet peppers are not only spicy but have a unique flavour. Why didn't I reach for them? Just not thinking clearly.

Now that I have identified part of my problem, I hope that this creative rut will end. I'm looking forward to creating with the things around me - and not dreaming about ingredients that I can't get a hold of easily.

Thanks Sue for hosting this month's Bread Bakers! Remember to scroll down to see the list of other recipes this month.

Spicy Herb Monkey Bread


Dough (slightly adapted from King Arthur)
8oz water
12.75 oz flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons yeast
1 1/2 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons dry milk (I used full fat)
1 1/2 tablespoons oil (I used coconut oil)

Herb Oil
2 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 1/2 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon dried herbs (I used thyme, oregano, chives and basil)
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine all the dough ingredients and knead for 5 to 8 minutes. Dough will be soft but very tacky. Dough can be left to rise in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature until doubled.

While dough is rising, combine all the ingredients for the herb oil.

When the dough has doubled, divide the dough into approximately 32 pieces. Each piece should weigh about .75 oz.

Dip each dough ball into the herb oil and then place into a Bundt pan. I used a 9 cup capacity Bundt pan.

Pour any remaining herb oil on top of the dough balls. Cover the Bundt pan and let rise at room temperature until doubled.

When the dough has almost doubled, preheat oven to 375 F.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden. Turn out on a cooling rack. Serve warm.

Breads with Peppers

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to

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Monday, July 25, 2016

Cinnamon Swirled Muffins - #MuffinMonday

It's hot. Yes, yes, I know it's summer. Yes, I'm on a tropical island. Yes, it's supposed to be hot. I just don't think it's supposed to be this hot. I didn't grow up with air conditioning. On the hottest of days, I'd think about using a fan. These days if I move away from the fan for a minute, I feel like I want to die. It gets hard to breathe. I have started researching air conditioning options. Electricity is extremely expensive here but air conditioning is becoming a basic amenity. I guess this is global warming?

That has nothing to do with the muffins in this post - just in case you were wondering. We could pretend though. I could tell you that I dread turning on the oven because of just how hot the kitchen gets. Then I could tell you that these muffins were worth it. I'd be lying though. Wait. Let me explain. The muffins are good. That's true. But I used the toaster oven instead of the large oven. Sorry, muffins, you just weren't worth that much.

I have not been the best blogger lately. It's partly a lack of inspiration and mostly forgetting that I need to do something. We could bring things full circle and blame the heat but it's way more complicated than that. For this month's Muffin Monday, I decided to keep things simple. A simple vanilla muffin with some cinnamon swirled in. Cinnamon is my comfort zone. When I need to bake but can't think of a new thing to bake, I go for cinnamon rolls. These cinnamon swirled muffins bring me a similar comfort in much less time.

As usual, you will find links to the other Muffin Monday recipes below. Happy Monday!

Cinnamon Swirled Muffins
Yield ~9

Cinnamon Swirl
3 tablespoons butter, melted and still warm
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
Muffin Base
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla


Preheat oven to 350F and grease a muffin pan.

Whisk together the cinnamon swirl ingredients and set aside. If the mixture becomes too thick, you will need to warm it in the microwave for just a coupe seconds. 

In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, nutmeg and salt. In a separate container, whisk together egg, milk, sugar, oil, and vanilla. Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients - mixing until just combined. There may be lumps.

Fill each muffin well half full. Add about a teaspoon of the cinnamon mixture and gently swirl it into the batter. Add more batter on top top to fill the wells to about two thirds. You can fill a plastic bag with the cinnamon mixture and pipe it in a swirl pattern on top of each muffin. Or you can drop some of the cinnamon mixture on each and then use a toothpick to gently swirl the cinnamon into the batter. Be careful not to mix it too much. If the cinnamon mixture is hardening or difficult to swirl, warm for just a couple seconds in the microwave.

Place the muffins in the preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all our of lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board.
Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday, can be found on our home page.

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