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Making Blueberry Muffins My Own: Take One

Sunday, January 24, 2010

For the past week, my brain has been taken over by thoughts of smiley faced blueberries dancing around on fluffy muffin shaped clouds. In my day dreams, the muffins were similar to the Costco style ones that you typically find at a mini mart or deli, over sized and loaded with more calories than you're "supposed" to eat in a day. I wanted them.

I don't have an over sized muffin pan, nor have I ever experimented gluten free baking with one, so when the time came to finally indulge in my berry delicious fantasy, I played it safe with the standard muffin size pan that I have stored in the drawer under the stove. Eleanore and I made a date out of it.

We wore matching aprons, made special for us by Christopher's Nana (shes recently started a blog herself, called "Conversations With Nana", that you can all check out by clicking here), and then we set up baking camp in the kitchen, and got ready to kick my craving.

The healthier I get, the more aware of my food allergies I become. Its easier to listen to my body when its not masked with an additional 60 pounds. My biggest food allergy isn't actually gluten (although that's the one that causes me the most physical agony), its fructose. When you think fructose, you probably think... "fruit". Its a lot more complicated than that. Its tomato, its beans, its onions and garlic. Its apples, its grapes, its basically everything sweet. There are a few exceptions to this, and my body will let me know when I've taken a bite of the wrong thing, but generally I can tolerate berries, very ripe bananas, and citrus fruits. Table sugar I can handle in moderation, but I often forget that moderation is key. A lot of people use maple syrup, honey, or agave nectar as replacement sweeteners when sugar isn't an option, but for somebody with fructose malabsorption (that's the fancy term for my troubles), that's the ultimate way to disrespect my body. Those things will push me over the edge.

So baking is again becoming a challenge. Before, I would let things slip. A little bit of maple here, a little bit of real milk there (I'm lactose intolerant too, of course), and even though I knew I'd probably have to pay for it in the near future, the reward that my taste buds had was worth it. Until 20 minutes later when I wad doubled over in indigestible pain, that is.

Enough is enough. I'm going to stop messing around, and start cooking and baking in a way that's flattering for my body. The kids and my husband will learn to adapt to the changes.

I want to start a collection of my own recipes. I'm in the works of making myself a recipe box (tutorial coming soon, I promise), and I want to fill it with recipes that I've perfected, and made my own. To do so, I need to go through several test runs. So the batch of blueberry muffins made yesterday morning by Eleanore and I, I'd call "take one".

This recipe was good. It made 11 muffins, rather than a full 12, they came out with a heavenly flavor, but... the texture was a little off. When I think blueberry muffins, I think... dense. I wanted them to be heavier, not so fluffy. Cupcakes are fluffy, muffins are thick. Even though this isn't the recipe that I'm going to write down on a handmade recipe card to share with my family 10 years from now (it has eggs in it, and I've somehow developed an actual egg allergy, as opposed to an intolerance, since becoming pregnant. red blotchy chest, swollen throat- so much fun), its too good to toss out, so of course I have to share it with you...

Tia's Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins: Take One

2 cups Pamela's baking mix
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup melted smart balance
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
2/3 cup soy milk
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a muffin tin with cupcake papers. Mix all dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour wet ingredients, including egg, into the same bowl, and mix together. The batter will seem kind of gummy, and that's OK. Fold in blueberries. Fill a 1/3 sized measuring cup with batter, and then pour into cupcake paper. That should fill the cupcake paper all the way full. Put muffins into the oven and set the time for 20-23 minutes. So in other words, set the timer for 20, check them, and put them back in for a few minutes if need be.

And that's that. Light and fluffy blueberry muffins, perfect for snacking on.

Side note: The inspiration for my caption style on my photographs today came from fellow blogger, and all around cutie- Kyla Roma. Love her style.

Expect many, many more posts about blueberry muffins in the future, haha.


LoveMeKnot Creations January 24, 2010 at 11:24 AM  

you need to either make a cookbook or start a cafe and sell your goods (baked goods, i mean.)

there's a lot of GF books, but I don't know of too many cookbooks where fructose, gf, lactose- free people can cook/bake from. You'll be famous ;)

soul_searching_mama January 24, 2010 at 11:42 AM  

They look yummy! :) I wish I had your talent for coming up with new recipes. That really sucks that you are allergic or intolerant to so many things, but it is good that you are good at coming up with new adapted recipes! I've been planning to make a recipe box soon too, because I want to compile our favorite recipes in one place. It will be fun to see your tutorial on your recipe box, since you're so creative. :)

Giggly January 24, 2010 at 12:10 PM  

Those do look totally yummO, dense or not. :) Yeah, you should put together a cook book! Your lovely food pics and all, would be a hit!

Casey January 24, 2010 at 12:19 PM  

sounds yummy, Tia!
I'm going to give these a try.
I'm not technically gluten intolerant but I (ready for TMI?) have IBS, ugh, and I can't or shouldn't eat a lot of the same foods as you.

Unknown January 24, 2010 at 12:59 PM  

Tia, seriously, once you have that recipe box finished, you SERIOUSLY need to get yourself an agent and get a cook book published. You. Are. Genius.

Tia Colleen January 24, 2010 at 1:15 PM  

Thank you for all of the flattering compliments, but I'm really nowhere near cookbook status. I have very few recipes that meet the criteria of my diet, most of the ones that I have previous posted aren't options for me anymore. I suppose if after I figure it all and have a decent collection, then I might be able to start thinking about getting them bound together and offering them to people other than myself, but for now, it seems as if everything is a test run, and I'm still learning.

And Casey, thats not too much information. My technical diagnosis is as simple as "IBS" as well. In my opinion, thats what they tell us tummy troubled patients when they're having too difficult of a time finding our actual problem. I think that anybody with the diagnosis of IBS needs to take matters into their own hands, because clearly, the doctors are overwhelmed and unable to fix it for us. Its taken me years to figure out my fructose malabsorption. YEARS. Now that I know the cause of most of my issues, I can finally start working towards regaining a healthy me :) Everything is trial and error in the life of an IBS patient, haha.

beka January 24, 2010 at 2:25 PM  

Wow, that looks so good. :)

Kyla Roma January 24, 2010 at 8:27 PM  

I'm glad you like the way I do my photos! AND I didn't even realize that I made a vegan (with gluten) version of these today after seeing this post lol

You're in my head!!

Heidi V January 24, 2010 at 9:30 PM  

I'm with everyone else you need to make a do it yourself cook book or something, I have more then one great recipe from you!

I'm grabbing this one for next weekend brunch.

Thank you so much...

Lauren January 25, 2010 at 9:58 AM  

Fructose, thats hard. These muffins looks simply fantastic! I hope that you find a good egg substitution (maybe EngerG or ground flax and water?).

NONtRENDY January 25, 2010 at 11:42 AM  

dear lord, eggs?!
I'm so sorry!

Anonymous,  January 27, 2010 at 11:11 PM  

I am printing this recipe off right now!

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