Monday, February 11, 2013

Tea & Honey Muffins

This year Justin and I decided that instead of making New Year's resolutions that we had try to keep for the whole year, we would make monthly resolutions and try to stick to them for 30 days at a time. Then the next month we'd make a new resolution, continuing this throughout the year. I decided to take it a step further and make three resolutions each month--one food, one fitness, and one personal. My food resolution for February is that I will eat breakfast every day. Too often I have a habit of waking up, jumping on the compuer and killing a few hours, and then discovering that it's lunchtime and I've yet to eat anything. For these 28 days, I'm trying to be very cognizant of that and make sure that I have some form of breakfast each and every morning, even if that's just a big cup of hot chocolate; I just need to have some kind of caloric intake to start out the day.

My go-to breakfast is usually a bowl of cereal. I decided to try to change it up this month and try out some new recipes, as well as making some old favorites. One of my favorite breakfast options is homemade muffins. They're incredibly versatile and can be as healthy (or not) as you want them to be. A basic muffin recipe also lends itself well to the addition of a variety of mix-ins and flavorings. For these particular muffins, I've adapted a basic recipe from King Arthur Flour. Some muffin recipes come out too light, crumbly, and cupcake-y for my taste, but these are much more dense and hearty like a good muffing should be. Any strongly brewed black tea will work here. I used some of my favorite tea--an apricot-flavored blend of Ceylon and Darjeeling--that we had at the coffee shop where I worked, but plain black tea from Luzianne or Lipton or something would be just as good. Tea isn't known for giving a very strong flavor to baked goods, so the stronger the brew the better.


7/8 cup strongly-brewed black tea, cooled to room temperature
2 eggs
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons honey
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon or more orange or lemon zest, optional


Preheat oven to 500 F.

Combine tea, eggs, oil, and honey in a bowl and mix well. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt until well-combined.

Add orange or lemon zest to dry ingredients, if desired, using more for a stronger citrus flavor. Pour in liquid ingredients and gently mix until just-combined, about 20 seconds. Batter should still be lumpy and may have small patches of dry flour.

Spoon batter into a greased muffin tin, filling wells 2/3 full. Place pan in oven and immediately lower temperature to 400 F. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

Servings: about 9

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.

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