Mr McGregor and I like our porridge in the morning. With that in mind I ordered some of our favourite Mornflake porridge oats directly from the mill in South Cheshire shortly after the start of lockdown. Since there has been a shortage of flour in the shops I also ordered some oat bran to use in cakes and bread (I also like some in my porridge). Oat bran is great stuff, with lots of health benefits. To produce oat bran, oat grains are processed to remove the inedible outer hull, leaving the ‘oat groat’. Oat bran is the outer layer of this groat and is high in soluble fibre, notably ‘beta glucan’. It also contains more protein than rolled or quick oats and is high in protein and antioxidants. It can help lower cholesterol and higher consumption of beta glucan has been associated with lower blood pressure. Eating fibre is, of course, also good for the digestive tract. So maybe oat bran containing cakes are slightly healthier cakes? They are certainly tasty.
Photo by Susn Matthiessen on Unsplash
There are loads of recipes on the Mornflake website and so far the ones I’ve tried have all worked well with less sugar in them – for these muffins I just used maple syrup and no additional sugar. The original recipe suggested apple cider vinegar – I found some (probably quite ancient) sherry vinegar in our cupboard which seemed to work absolutely fine.
Photo by Glen Carrie on Unsplash
Raspberry, almond and oat bran muffins:
120g ground almonds
200g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp almond extract
80ml maple syrup
350ml milk (I used some lactose-free semi-skimmed milk here but I am sure other milks would work just as well)
1.5 tbsp apple cider vinegar (I used sherry vinegar and it seemed to work OK)
150g raspberries (about 3 per muffin)
- Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/150 fan. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with muffin cases
- Pour the into a bowl and add the apple cider vinegar, stir and set to one side for 10 to 15 minutes. The recipe suggested to wait until the milk curdles but I just used it as it was after 10 minutes
- Sieve the flour into a mixing bowl, then add the ground almonds, oatbran and baking powder. Add in the almond extract, maple syrup and milk-vinegar and mix until all the ingredients have combined.
- Evenly distribute the mixture between the cases and add 3 raspberries to the top of each muffin.
- Place in the centre of the oven and bake for 30 minutes, until golden and springy to touch.
- Remove from the oven and allow the muffins to cool slightly in the tin before removing and placing on a wire cooling rack.