Saturday, 20 September 2014

Strawberry, macadamia and oat muffins with sweet spices

A few weeks ago I went to a spice appreciation class at Herbie's in Rozelle (click here for their website). It was a lovely afternoon and the perfect birthday present for anyone who, like me, loves anything related to food. The idea of flavouring your food with herbs and spices instead of added fat, salt and sugar, is definitely one that appeals to me, and which, in my opinion, offers infinitely more possibilities! 

Now, when you think of herbs and spices you generally think of savoury dishes, right? Well, if you have ever added vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg or allspice to cakes or other baked goods, you've added spice to sweet dishes too! This time, I decided to venture further than these traditional ingredients and experiment with one of my Herbie's purchases: fragrant sweet spice mix. Made up of coriander seed, cassia, cinnamon quills, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, poppy seeds, cloves, cardamom and rose petals, it really is delicious to smell (and taste!). 

And so, this was my creation: sweet and fragrant strawberry, macadamia and oat muffins, full of fibre, low in saturated fat and sugar and with plenty of flavour! A perfect afternoon treat. Note: if you don't have access to this fragrant mix, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon with still give a lovely flavour!

Strawberry, macadamia and oat muffins with sweet spices

1 ½ C wholemeal SR flour
¾ C rolled oats
¼ C LSA 
¼ C brown sugar, plus 1 Tbsp extra
2 tsp fragrant sweet spice mix
1 egg
½ C skim milk
½ C reduced fat Greek-style yoghurt
¼ C oil (olive, canola or macadamia)
1 tsp vanilla
¾ C strawberries, diced, plus 2-3 extra, sliced
2 Tbsp macadamias, chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Combine flour, oats, LSA, brown sugar and fragrant sweet spice mix in a large bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk egg, milk, yoghurt, oil and vanilla.
  4. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and gently combine. Fold through diced strawberries.
  5. Divide mixture among 12 muffin cases, top with chopped macadamias and a sprinkling of brown sugar (from 1 Tbsp extra). Place a strawberry slice on each.
  6. Bake for 25-30mins or until lightly golden and skewer comes out clean.

Makes 12 muffins.

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