Pumpkin Muffins with Millet and Chocolate Chips

This recipe adventure is actually an older one from the fall (hense the pumpkin, although who would really turn that down just because it’s summer?). I remember the day well: it began with an uncomfortably early rugby game, full of tight shorts, sweat and bruises the size of your mom (the sidelines are a tough place); then, I spent a few hours trying to coax my pilot light into wondrous flames (for, approximately, the eighth time); later, when I was filled with a need to recover from this strenuous day, I threw together these spectacular little hot cakes (correction, muffins) and shared them with fellow Writing Center nerd-friends over a semi-clean game of Scrabble.

Don’t feel bad if your life is less invigorating; mine is not meant to be a commonly traveled road. Pumpkin muffins, however, are on the path for all!

The concept of “miniature” is a fascinating one. Take Dr. Evil’s “Mini-Me”, for instance. Upon watching the highly acclaimed film Austin Powers, I thought, “Well, that sexy gentleman with the teeth would certainly make a nice fur coat to wear”.

Then, when there was a better shot of “Mini-Me”, I thought, “That sure doesn’t look like Mike Myers. This man strongly resembles the actor Verne Troyer, only with more bling.”

So when you eat mini-muffins, cupcakes, brownies, whathaveyou, I wonder: are you troubled by the implications of their being “mini”? Do you ponder the differences between their apparent regular versions and themselves?

It is for this reason, friends, that I do not address these muffins as “miniature”. Admire not their stature, but their individual taste and personality.

Pumpkin Muffins with Millet and Chocolate Chips

total time: about 1 hour, 20 minutes

makes about 16 regular muffins

adapted from: Joy the Baker, Cookie and Kate

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup dry millet
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions (by Joy the Baker):

  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line a muffin tin with paper or foil liners and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together oil, brown sugar, eggs, pureed pumpkin, and vanilla extract.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, spices, and millet.
  4. Add the dry ingredients, all at once to the wet ingredients.  Add the butter milk and fold together.  When batter is almost completely mixed, fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Spoon batter into prepared pan.  Fill muffin cups three quarters full.
  6. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.  Let rest for at least 15 minutes before serving.
-Bette Jane
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