Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Lembas- Elven Cakes

It is 89 degrees out and I am baking.
I absolutely must. We are out of muffins.
My Husband calls them, "Lembas- elven cakes".
He says two can keep a man in good health all day.

Before we were married I asked him what would he like from me in our marriage? He asked me to "please pack my lunch." Willingly and joyfully , I have done so for over 30 years. He always thanks me and says his lunch was good. Once he told me his lunch was his," little piece of home he took with him every day.". After that I tried to make even better lunches.

He leaves before dawn while I am still asleep. Over the years I have tried different types of breakfast foods for him; protein shakes in the blender, Roman Meal waffles with honey and wheat germ, cookies, all failed at some point. On August 3rd, 2003, (according to a note our daughter wrote in the recipe book) the breakfast muffin was born.
It is an old recipe I use from my husband's Grandmother. It is her Zucchini Bread recipe. I have changed lots of it over the years to reflect our way of eating. Our daughter's note continues, "over 100 zucchini from the garden!"

Granny's Zucchini Bread
2 cups sugar
3 cups flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla
3 eggs beaten
2 cups grated zucchini
1/2 cup chopped raisins

Grease 2 loaf pans
Sift dry ingredients together in a large bowl
Stir oil and eggs and vanilla together in another bowl.
Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients. Stir until blended.
Blend in zucchini and nuts.
Bake in 350 degree oven for 55 minutes

It was a good year for zukes. My garden journal says, "the squash bugs left the crop alone this year." I had peeled and shredded many zucchini and had baked bread. A few loaves were in the freezer for December eating, when the taste of the garden would be so appriciated. I still had lots of zucchini to figure out what to do with. Muffins were a natural remedy for my harvest. I did not have to bake them all at once. I could shred up the zukes and freeze 2 cups in a zipper freezer bag for baking later.

I thought of ways to make these as high in nutrition as possible.

Q's Zucchini Muffins

2 cups organic unbleached sugar
3 cups whole wheat flour
3 tps cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda

1 cup olive oil
2 tsp vanilla
3 organic eggs beaten
2 cups shredded un-peeled zucchini
2 cups chopped pecans
2 cups organic flame raisins

In a large mixing bowl add dry ingredients. Stir to mix.
Place all liquid ingredients in another mixing bowl. Stir to mix.
Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the liquid ingredients into the well. Stir to mix.
Stir in zucchini
Stir in nuts and raisins. ( At our house these are known as "the goodie")

Using large muffin pans and large unbleached muffin papers, place two heaping tablespoons of batter into the papers.
Bake at 375 degrees for 22 minutes.
yield 32 muffins.

Lots of variations have developed over the past three years. When a huge supply of pumpkins came to me last October, I baked the pumpkins and blended them up and used the pumpkin instead of the zucchini.
If I want to be fancy I will sprinkle wheat germ on the tops of the muffins before baking. When I have flax seed I will add a 1/2 cup of flax seed to the mixture. Sometimes I will put dried cranberries instead of raisins. A cup of apple sauce has replaced the olive oil when I have been out. I have used almond oil too.

The entire process takes me an hour. I put two baked muffins, after they have cooled, in a sandwich sized, zip lock bag and place them in the freezer. Before bed, when I pack lunch, I get out a bag and put it in the lunch box. Breakfast is served.

1 comment:

Q said...

Thank you, Sprite!
We shall celebrate Lughnasadh here at the Corner on August 1st! I made a note. I do not know very much about the Scottish ways. I find them so charming. Kind of you to share with us.
We can do cakes together.
Sprite you are a blessing to me too! A blessing to all who come here.