Date Bran and Pecan Muffins

This recipe is healthy enough to eat for breakfast and the muffins are sublime served up with a bit of nut butter or virgin coconut oil.  It’s my veganized and sourdough version of the Sugarless Bran ‘n’ Pecan Muffins from Amrita Sondhi’s book The Tastes of Ayurveda.

Yield: 12 muffins

What you need:

  • 1 cup whole spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup cream of barley cereal
  • 2 tablespoons sourdough starter mixed with enough filtered water to make 1 cup
  • 2-1/4 cups wheat bran or oat bran
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt or Himalayan pink salt
  • a generous pinch of ground cardamom
  • 1 cup chopped Deglet Noor dates
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup hemp milk (or other plant-based milk of choice)
  • 1/3 cup organic unsulphured blackstrap molasses
  • scant 1/3 cup sunflower oil (1 or 2 tablespoons short of the 1/3 cup mark)

What you do:

  1. The night before you want muffins in the morning (or 12 hours before baking), mix the spelt flour and cream of barley cereal with the sourdough and water mixture.  Make sure you use a glass, ceramic or other non-reactive bowl – NO METAL – sourdough and metal don’t tango well together (a 4 cup glass measuring cup works well).  Blend well, cover and leave to ferment overnight.  Henceforth, this will be known as the “ferment.”
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C).  Line a muffin tin with silicone liners, or grease and flour it if preferred.
  3. In a biggish bowl, mix the bran, soda, salt and cardamom together.  Add the dates and pecans and toss everything around until the dates are separated and covered in bran.
  4. Uncover the bowl or measuring cup of ferment and add the oil, molasses and hemp milk to it.  Whisk until everything is uniform, with no oil around the edges of the liquid mix.
  5. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and stir just until all the bran blend is wetted.  Do not overmix.
  6. Separate the batter amongst the cavities of the muffin tin and bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Cool 5 minutes in the pan, remove from pan, and finish cooling on a wire rack.  Serve still warm or at room temperature.

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