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20 February 2013

Almond-Date Muffins



Can I start with my compulsive nature today? I usually attempt to create my posts at home on my laptop. Well, lately I have noticed that depending on what computer you view this blog on it looks slightly different- on my computer at school the font is bolded, on the same computer using internet explorer and not mozilla or google chrome- the header is slightly too big, and at my home desktop the brown is much brighter. Now, for others this would probably be no big deal, but given that I am picky and I have tried to make this blog purtty-- this has made me intrigued in an irritated way :) But I got to share my feelings, so I will let it go....

Although my sister did not come Monday- I quite enjoyed my time to catch up on personal things and things that have been long over due on my list of things to get done. I cannot say that I accomplished everything I needed to but I am definitely one step closer. I simply went off my "list" of things and started with the most "overdue." I have such busy weeks and I definitely always feel like I am working super hard-- so it is such an awful feeling to always feel behind :/ Life of a graduate student? I definitely think so. I dream one day if the feeling of imminent falling behind will ever go away ;) Hahaha..it is okay! If you have a dream- gotta keep truckin'!

I also did some baking and cooking. The hubby has to drive to Houston three times this week, so I wanted to make a muffin that he would really enjoy- to give him that extra sweet boost in the morning to start his day! Since he loves dates and nuts, I wanted to make him a recipe that used both those elements. Sadly- there are very few recipes out there! So I found one recipe and improvised slightly. Well not only did they smell amazing when they came out of the oven, but the hubby said he really liked them (score one for the wifey ;) Fun story: my dad actually introduced the hubby to dates, but now they "disagree" on what their favorite type of dates are :)

These muffins are so festive- I can definitely also seem them as a Christmasie Muffin. 






ALMOND-DATE MUFFINS
INGREDIENTS

Preheat Oven to 400F Degrees

2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
2/3 c. + 2 tbsp. sugar
1 c. milk or buttermilk
1 egg
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. of butter melted (1 stick)
1 1/2 c. chopped dates
3/4 c. almond slivers 

DIRECTIONS

In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and sugar. Set aside. In a large measuring cup or small bowl, mix together milk, egg, vanilla extract and melted butter. Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and combine--folding batter rather than stirring. Continue folding batter, until all dry ingredients are incorporated (i.e., you do not see any flour any more and instead see only batter). The folding by hand rather than mixer-- will prevent over-mixing. Finally mix in chopped dates and almond slivers- again folding the ingredients in rather than stirring.

Line muffin pan with liners or coat with cooking spray. Then evenly divide batter among 10 muffins wells-- I use an ice cream scoop for quick and easy filling (a cupcake batter dispenser will not work so well because the dates and almonds create a chunky batter that will clog the cupcake batter dispenser). Bake for 17-20 minutes, until golden brown and inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Makes 10 jumbo muffins or 12 large muffins.

Enjoy,
Chika

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