When Life Hands Me Lemons…

19 01 2013

When life hands me lemons, I make lemon poppyseed mini-muffins. I really believe that life is only as bad as you perceive it to be and living well with whatever life hands you reaps the greatest return.

So last week’s post felt good and I seem to be back in the groove of things, so I decided to post something I made last night. I think this time of year has me thinking about how when we were kids, would head down to Florida with my grandparents and uncle Butts to play on the beach, hang out while my grandfather worked covering the Blue Jays training camp. My grandfather was a sports writer for one of the largest Cdn newspapers. We have many pictures of us in our bathing suits, splashing around and as I get older those are some of my most favourite memories of childhood. My grandfather Milt had a sweet tooth and I curse my Dunnell genes as I also have “the sugar bug”. When we were down in Fla. I remember him getting all excited over southern pecan rolls (OMG heaven) and the crazy citrus that was in season at this time.

As I become more aware of eating ‘in season’ I bought a whack of lovely looking Meyer lemons from Fla and decided to make something delicious. Ken has put in repeated requests for lemon mini-muffins so I found this recipe from “All Day I Dream About Food” and tweaked it a tad. Carolyn’s recipe was a lemon bundt cake with icing which I thought maybe a bit over the top for breakfast. I have to keep my rep of being a militant paleo food chick and eating cake with icing for breakfast is not good for my street cred.

I will take a moment to give a huge nod to Carolyn, low carb blog goddess, over at All Day I Dream About Food and fellow Canadian. She had gestational diabetes that stuck around and has really mastered the art of low carb baking. If you are diving into this realm and dont know where to start, I highly recommend her blog. Everything tastes delicious and some of her biscotti recipes are favourites in our house.

While this isnt 100% paleo as it has butter in it, one could use ghee IF you want to be super strict about it or grass fed butter and call it a day. If you have dairy issues, use ghee as the buttery taste is one of the first flavours you get after the lemon.

Low Carb Poppyseed Mini-Muffins w/ cranberry topper
from Carolyn at All Day I Dream About Food, tweaks by me in bold

3 cups almond flour
1/3 cup unflavoured whey protein powder (*I used vanilla whey)
3 tbsp poppy seeds
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp xanthan gum
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, softened (room temp is important so things mix well)
½ cup Swerve Sweetener or granulated erythritol (*Splenda for me)
3 large eggs (*room temp as well, or they dont mix well with the butter-splenda and it looks like a curdled mess, which mine did but everything worked out in the end)
20 drops stevia extract
Zest of 2 lemons
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (*or juice of 1 lemon)
¼ cup almond milk (*unsweetened, because the other stuff is full of sugar)
1 tsp lemon extract
48 dried unsweetened cranberries for toppers
48 mini-muffin paper liners

So if you are making muffins, follow these instructions and not the bundt instructions. The mixing is pretty much the same, the temperature and baking times are WAY different.

SO preheat oven to 350 degrees, and line each muffin tin with a mini-muffin paper liner. As you are doing this, in your KA mixer started creaming your butter, like 2 minutes. Add your splenda and neglect for another 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, making sure the sides are scrapped down. When I added my eggs I didnt get perfect mixing, but dont worry as it will all worked out in the end. Once all the eggs are incorporated, add lemon extract, lemon zest and stevia drops and make sure it all blends together as best as possible.

Grab a big bowl and add almond flour, whey protein, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt and give it a good stir. Add the poppyseeds and give it a good stir making sure everything is distributed with no clumps. Add the wet ingredients into the dry making sure you mix out any clumps from the liquids, before fully mixed add lemon juice and milk and the dough should be a thick muffin consistency.

Grab you super duper cookie scoop (1 tbsp or so) and scoop into mini-muffin liners and add one dried cranberry to the top of each. Pop into the over for 12 minutes or so, just long enough to see the tops of the muffin brown a bit. These wont rise much so no worries about spill over and a hard clean up. Let cool before consuming because that dried cranberry is nuclear hot.

This recipe made 48 mini-muffins for me, so 24 servings. I gave Ken 4 mini-muffins for breakfast so double the WLS serving for people with regular stomachs.

Nuts on these are for two
Calories 145, carbs 4g(2g NET), fat 12g, protein 6g, fibre 2g, Sugars 1g

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