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Well, my world, anyway. There are certain days (or weeks) when facing the day is just hard. Maybe I have to work a 12-hour day before heading home to my kids, or maybe a student of mine has been going through something rough and I’m absorbing the pain. It’s not always cake!
On days like that, I need an easy breakfast to throw together. This muffin base is simple, butter-free (and therefore a health food, of course), and easily customized. I chose lime zest (a.k.a. summer in a whiff) and white chocolate chips, but you can use any old mix-ins. It’s all about making your mornings as happy as possible!
I know it’s pretty common for people to whine about winter, so I try not to do it a lot. But being honest here, this time of year is an endless struggle for me. You see, I have an autoimmune disorder that restricts the blood vessels all over my body. In warm weather, my blood flows freely and I feel energetic, vibrant and positive.
But when winter hits, I range from a partial lack of feeling in my arms and legs (and even other parts of me on bad days) to a continuous ache in those areas. It’s totally manageable, but there is a tangible difference between the person I am in warm weather and the person I am right now. I’m just waiting for the seasons to shift so that things can get better.
And I don’t even mean to complain (though it reads that way, I know), because I’m really lucky. At least my problem is seasonable and it’s workable. A lot of people suffer with chronic pain and exhaustion and there’s not anything they can do to make it better.
While I like to think of the Sylvia Plath quotation that there’s not a whole lot that a good book and a good bath doesn’t fix, we all know what happened to her. So I think it’s really important to focus on self-pampering when possible. That could be wrapping yourself up in a cozy heated blanket at work with a mug of tea, or taking a bubble bath at night, or taking a 20-minute power nap, or having muffins for breakfast. Or why not do it all?
Well, time often gets in the way, but that’s why I love these muffins. They take no time at all to make (the video will show you!) since it’s a simple matter of mixing dry ingredients with wet ones, and then you’re done. Check it out!
This time of year, I start baking with citrus more, especially lime. Lime to me is summer. When I zest a lime and the aroma reaches my nose, I feel sunny days and sand and margaritas. These muffins reached me at the heart of my winter blah feelings and really helped alleviate some of the grayness everywhere.
And white chocolate with lime is the best. If you haven’t gone for that tangy-sweet combo, try it now!
It’s totally okay to hate on a season for whatever reason, but just be sure to self-pamper. After all, there’s no guarantee than anyone else will do it for you. Make some muffins, grab some tea and have a moment!
I fulfill many roles in life: wife, mother, teacher, everlasting learner.
This site is dedicated to one role that expresses my creativity in ways that I find consistently challenging and rewarding: baker.
Inventing new ways to enhance food, especially if that food involves chocolate or peanut butter (or both!), is a passion of mine. I look forward to sharing my ideas with you.
How many of you still have guests in the house over the holidays? Show of hands, people!
After a while, it gets rough to keep feeding everybody. Sure, it’s nice the first day, but as house guests linger on, keeping up the hosting duties can be a real drag. That’s when it’s nice to make a really quick coffee cake for breakfast. Not for them, you understand. They can have Cheerios. This cake is for you!
I like having a warm, fresh cinnamon-laden treat first thing in the morning. I mean, who doesn’t? That’s why cinnamon rolls are popular. But this is a much simpler option, and all those flavors are still there.
Nothing beats fresh bread. Well, maybe some things do. But not much.
Like, I’ve heard that winning the lottery is pretty awesome. But if that happens to you, you’re not supposed to tell anyone or they’ll be trying to bum your winnings. I guess you’re supposed to pretend that the new mansion (complete with pool, personal trainer and stylist) came from a modest amount that a rich uncle left you upon his passing.
Fresh bread is nothing to keep secret. Oh, no. You have to share it liberally, announcing to one and all that you have a fresh loaf to be eaten. Especially a loaf like this one. It’s got a delicious almond chocolate filling, so it bridges the gap between actual food and dessert. I had it for breakfast!
Years ago, she started championing canola as a healthier alternative for people who need to keep their cholesterol low and their hearts in tip-top shape. She tries to bake with it instead of butter, and to be honest, I’m not usually with her. After all, I make a lot of dessert. Dessert usually requires butter.
But my parents did me a huge favor this past week, so I baked them heart-healthy brownies as a way of saying thank you. And want to hear the best part? You won’t even miss the butter. These are easy, quick, and taste totally decadent.