What do you eat when you’re alone, cooking for yourself? What strange things do you enjoy eating when no one else is watching?
I have a confession: I do not like baking banana bread. I love eating banana bread, in fact it is maybe my favourite muffin-like baked good. But I’ve never liked baking it – and that is because I would always make it too dry, too wet, too sweet, or not banana-y enough. I’ve probably baked a dozen banana bread recipes (and they’re always titled “the BEST banana bread!”), each time hoping that I’d find the one.
Sometimes it feels like I live in the rain capital of the world. No joke, it has been raining here in Vancouver for a week straight. Maybe more, I’ve lost count. I often find it challenging to get through the winters because I get so sun-deprived and often joke, in the dead of a rainy, dark January, that I’ve got to pick up and move to a sunnier city.
I think I’ve mentioned before, but J is picky about muffins. Of all the muffins I’ve ever made during our 3 years together, there is only one muffin that he requests – my Orange Cranberry Muffins (please pardon the bad photography in that old post!). To him, those Orange Cranberry Muffins have the perfect amount of moistness and flavour – for J, a dry muffin is the world’s worst sin.
So, this morning when he casually mentioned that these Pumpkin muffins rate right up there with the Orange Cranberry Muffins I thought, sound the alarm! We’ve found a winner!! I didn’t think anything would de-throne those Orange Cranberry Muffins – ever.
We have returned from a very wonderful and very busy trip to San Francisco! I don’t know how we managed to squeeze all we did into 3 days. Photos to come (once I actually get around to editing them and not just crashing with exhaustion after I get home from work…)
Upon returning from our trip, our muffin stash in the freezer was depleted, and after eating a lot of junk food and basically just a lot of food in general in San Francisco, I wanted a healthy muffin. Unfortunately sometimes healthy means dry and flavourless, but this recipe for Healthy Apple Oatmeal Muffins doesn’t compromise on either – these muffins are full of whole grains, no butter, and are packed with tons of apples. J gave them the man seal of approval – there’s nothing worse to him than a dry muffin!
You should definitely stash a batch of these in your freezer to grab for quick breakfasts! They taste wonderfully heated up in the microwave and spread with a little square of butter.
There’s nothing like a cool, refreshing glass of Cold Brew coffee to start your day right. J is the Cold Brew master in our house – he drinks it almost every day in the spring/summer/fall. I love it too – I can’t drink milky lattes every day! The beauty with Cold Brew is that it’s super simple – all you need is a little bit of time and planning to make it the night before.
Cold Brew (also called Cold Press) is a different brewing technique than just making a cup of coffee and throwing some ice cubes in. Cold Brew is made with cold water, not warm. Brewing with cold water means the coffee needs to sit in the water for longer than it needs to brew in warm water – brewing the coffee overnight is a great way to do this! The resulting coffee is smooth – so smooth – and rich, less acidic, and a bit chocolately too.
Best of all – you don’t need any fancy equipment. Got a French Press? You’re good to go. (We have a large Espro press which J loves.)