Lemon zest and cardamom give these Blueberry Muffins their amazing flavor and aroma. Oat and millet flours produce a muffin that is hearty and filling, and dates and applesauce lend sweetness and moistness without the use of sugar and oil.
Makes 1 dozen muffins
• 12 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped (about 1-½ cups or 8 ounces)
• 1 cup non-dairy milk
• 1-½ cups old fashioned rolled oats
• ¾ cup millet
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
• ½ cup applesauce
• 1 teaspoon lemon zest, packed
• 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (if frozen, do not thaw first)
• ½ cup roughly chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a small bowl, cover the chopped dates with the non-dairy milk and set aside (so the dates may soften).
Grind oats and millet into a flour in your blender (a high-speed blender will do a finer job) and place into a mixing bowl. Add the baking powder and cardamom to this and stir with a fork.
Place the dates and non-dairy milk into a blender and blend until smooth. Add this date mixture to the bowl of dry ingredients along with the applesauce and lemon zest, and mix with a spoon until all the dry ingredients have disappeared.
Gently fold in the blueberries and chopped walnuts. Spoon the batter into a silicone muffin pan or parchment muffin papers in a metal pan, filling each muffin cup about ¾ full. (Since the batter has no oil, I have found that regular cupcake papers tend to stick to the muffins).
Bake for 30 minutes. The muffins will be done when the tops have begun to brown and cracks appear, and when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for at least 15 to 20 minutes before removing.
Blueberries tend to sink into the batter during cooking, so I like to push a few blueberries into the top of each muffin just before baking (make sure they’re pushed in though, or they will roll off during rising).
If you’ve never used cardamom, I urge you to seek some out. Cardamom is a wonderfully aromatic spice used in Indian cooking. You can buy it pre-ground or in seed form, but I like to buy the seeds and ground them myself since this results a bigger flavor and aroma. Cardamom can be found wherever spices are sold.
If you do not have cardamom, substitute with 1-½ teaspoons cinnamon.