olive oil carrot muffins
I have a problem, an accidental one really. It’s not like I mean for it to happen. You see, I have a compulsive behavior to buy produce solely based on it’s good looks, and outward appeal. When I’m exiting the market, I’m often carrying way more than we could possibly need for the two of us. My darling husband, always trying to reel me in usually questions, “are you sure we need all of those carrots (or cherimoya, or tomatoes, or…)? Don’t we still have 5 pounds of those at home?” My answer is always the same, “I know, but these are special, they’re so pretty!”. So we get them, with the best of intentions to gobble them up, but as they get stuffed in the crisper and the days wear on, they are invariably forgotten and they wither away into a limp oblivion until they meet their final resting place among the other scraps and lawn clippings in that old, dirty compost can out in the garage. Never meeting their full potential, I wince as they tumble into the dark, smelly abyss and hear my husbands voice in my head, “Are you sure we need all those carrots?”.
After one too many trips out to the compost can carrying limp remnants of my affections, I decided to do things differently. It was time to turn over a new leaf. No more waste. No more neglect. Determined, I decided to only buy what we need for a couple of days, and to be sure to use that up before buying more. This has changed how I cook. Instead of asking what I want to eat, I ask what’s in the fridge. Then I build on that. Well, as you have probably guessed this muffin is a product of my self improvement. That bag of carrots that was on the verge of compostdom needed to find a new use quickly, and I figured a muffin is about as useful as it gets.
olive oil carrot muffins
loosely based on a recipe from Gourmet
makes 18 muffins
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 pound carrots, shredded (enough for 2 cups)
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup olive oil*
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and shredded
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with one rack in the upper third of the oven and one in the lower third. Spray 18 standard muffin cups.
- Into a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Whisk in sugars. Add shredded carrots and pecans to flour mixture and toss to coat.
- In a bowl, mix together the eggs, oil and vanilla. (*The olive oil in this recipe lends a great flavor, however these turned out to be a little too oily for my taste. Next time I will use 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil and 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce or non-fat greek yogurt. Go ahead and give any of these a try and tell me how they turn out!) Stir shredded apple into egg mixture and add to flour mixture, stirring just to combine. Divide batter among muffin cups, filling until 3/4 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Be sure to rotate the pans halfway through to guarantee even baking.
- Let muffins cool in the pans 5 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely, or as long as you can stand it. Muffins keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.