I’ve posted a few recipes for quinoa on my blog, like Vanilla Roobios Quinoa with Coconut Milk, an Orange Spiced Quinoa, a Quick Quinoa Soup, and Tomatoes Stuffed with Quinoa, but I hadn't used it as an ingredient in a baked item. So when a friend posted a recipe for quinoa muffins, I immediately got excited about it. Her recipe is here and she also has a few more great quinoa recipes on her blog as well. As much as her muffin recipe looks and sounds fabulous (and I will try it, as is!), I tweeked it slightly because I had chocolate on my mind. The result is below. These taste rich and are moist and chocolately, but induce none of the guilt that may result from eating a heavy chocolate cake or pastry. I would very happily eat these for breakfast–I did this morning and I was hunger-free and full of energy even following my afternoon yoga class, which went very well, I might add. I've got ideas for several variations that I'll post after they're tested. Three cheers for quinoa!!!
1 ¾ cup whole grain flour, like spelt
¼ c unsweetened cocoa powder
½ c sugar like sucanat or turbinado sugar
1 ½ t baking powder
1 t sea or Himalayan salt
1 t cinnamon
½ t cardamom
¼ c oil, like grapeseed
1 large egg
1 c buttermilk
1 t vanilla
2 c cooked quinoa, cooled
1/3 c dried cherries or cranberries (or whatever dried fruit you like!)
¼ c chopped walnuts, (or again, take your pick of nuts: pecans, almonds, macadamia nuts, etc.)
1. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl (the first 7 above) and mix with a wire whisk.
2. In a separate larger bowl, combine the wet ingredients (including the dried fruit and nuts) and mix well.
3. Gently fold in the dry ingredients and mix just until they are incorporated.
4. Fill lightly buttered muffin tins ¾ full with batter. Bake at 350°F for 25 min, or until cooked through. Let cool slightly before removing from the pan.