I get deja vu at the start of every season. It can happen by the first snowfall or hot cocoa by the fireplace in the winter, the warm weather and daffodils in the spring, the beach and iced coffee in the summer, or the pumpkins and colorful leaves in the fall. I think to myself, “Why is this not my favorite season?!” Ironically, a few months later, I can’t wait for it to be over.
I’ve come to the conclusion that the best season is the beginning of each one. For example, let’s take fall, also known as autumn for the British and the poetic. There is an official date for the first day of fall in late September, but I have another way of officiating the season.
There is an enormous maple leaf tree on my lawn, (actually the biggest on my street but who’s measuring) that is always the last to change colors in my neighborhood. It’s not autumn for me until its leaves begin to wither. With that signal, the cooler temperature, and crispness in the air, it finally feels like the fall.
The deja vu of the first day of this season came back when I bit into these muffins.
Based on the ‘food scheme’ of this season, I wonder if fall is my favorite after all. This is the time for pumpkins, spices like ginger and cinnamon, and most importantly: apples.
Fall is the time for apple-picking, which means you drive about an hour to a farm, wander around the orchard, ride the hay loft, and come home with more apples than you can ever eat. This is when you begin to leaf through recipes trying to find ways to use these apples before they rot.
When I was younger, I was dropping by a childhood friend’s house. A delicious smell greeted me as I stepped in. My friend invited me into the kitchen, explaining that she and her older sister had picked fresh rhubarb earlier that day, have just finished baking a strawberry rhubarb pie, and would I like a slice? To this day, that was the best pie I’ve ever tasted.
For those coming home with an overabundance of apples, making a pie is daunting. Whoever made up the term ‘easy as pie,’ is a liar. Pie take a lot of time and effort.
When pie fails, you can make these gluten, dairy, and refined sugar-free muffins in a food processor or blender. There’s nothing easier than throwing in these ingredients and flicking a switch.
Prepare to taste the first day of autumn.
Apple Cinnamon Muffins
Gluten, Dairy, & Refined Sugar-Free
- 2 cored and grated medium-small sized organic apples
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup organic coconut oil, melted
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2/3 cup honey
- 5 eggs, room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups brown rice flour
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 cup crushed walnuts
- 2 tbsp honey
- 3 tsp cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Whisk the apples with the wet ingredients, taking care to stir well when adding the coconut oil so it won’t congeal. Mix the brown rice flour with the cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda in separate bowl. Add slowly to the liquid batter and mix well but do not overbeat, or your muffins will be full of holes! Pour or scoop the batter into lined muffin tins.
Mix the Walnut Topping ingredients together with a fork and sprinkle over the muffins.
Bake for approximately 25 minutes until the tops are golden and the bottoms are browned. Let cool before removing the muffin lining. Store in the fridge.
Makes 2 dozen muffins.