I’ve been traveling around a bit, which is always a shock to my system. As you can guess, I’m a rather homey sort, so when I’m on the road it throws my reliable patterns off. I find that getting right back into my routine is the best thing for me, so this morning I made a batch of my puffed grain granola and baked up these muffins. Muffins, I always say, have gotten an unfairly bad rap. Sad factory muffins are everywhere, and I’m quite sure they are not good for you at all. Homemade muffins, however, are a snap to make, and they can be a real source of comfort and nourishment. Sure, they are little cakes, but when they’re jacked up with coconut and dates they are a treat that you can be proud of.
Date Coconut Muffins
Preheat oven to 350. Makes 12 standard size muffins. Have a greased muffin tin ready.
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup deglet dates (or whatever kind), chopped (to make date puree, prepared with 1 cup of water and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda according to notes in recipe)
1/4 cup coconut oil, liquid form
2 small eggs
Mix flours, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and coconut in a bowl. Make date purée: heat water, chopped dates and baking soda and cook at a simmer until dates are soft. (Apparently, the baking soda is to further the softening of the dates.) The mixture will foam up, so keep an eye on it. Purée the mixture until somewhat smooth. Let it cool. Whisk buttermilk, eggs and liquid coconut oil together. You may substitute vegetable oil but the flavor is better with coconut. Make sure to heat the coconut oil gently if it’s still solid. Stir this into the dry mixture. Then add the date purée. Incorporate thoroughly but don’t over beat. Pour into a standard 12-cup muffin tin that is well greased. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Let sit in pan for about five minutes, then remove to cool on a rack.