Sunday, October 08, 2006

Coconut Muffins

As I mentioned before, I love coconut and decided some time ago that I'd like to give coconut muffins a try. Unfortunately, the recipes I'd tried up to this point turned out relatively poorly. Since unsweetened coconut is expensive and hard to find in Tokyo, this is pretty annoying since it wastes it.

After some experimenting, I finally came up with a low sugar muffin which has great texture. If you're in Japan, you can get unsweetened flaked coconut through Tengu Natrual Foods and granular Splenda from the Foreign Buyer's Club. If you're in the U.S., you can probably truck on over to your local market. :-p

If you live in Japan but don't have muffin cups, you can buy them at a branch of Tokyu Hands relatively cheaply.

Here's the recipe:

1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
2 cups white flour
1 T. baking powder
2 T. granulated sugar
1 cup granular Splenda
1 t. salt
1 T. honey
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil

Mix the coconut, Splenda, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the honey, egg, milk, and oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring until just mixed. The batter should be lumpy but the flour should be incorporated. Spray the bottoms only of muffin cups with non-stick spray (or use paper). Fill cups about 2/3 of the way with batter. Bake at 190 degrees C or 375 degrees F for 15 minutes.

By the way, the reason that you shouldn't overmix muffin batter is that it overworks the gluten in the flour and creates muffins with a tough texture and tunnels. This is less likely to happen with cake batter because there's a higher liquid content in it though, in general, it's a good idea never to overwork the batter or dough for anything containing flour except bread (which benefits from gluten development).

I toss these in a Ziploc bag and freeze them and thaw them as desired. They're great with a cup of tea in the morning or as a tea time treat. Yum!

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