Breads, Breakfast, BS, Hairdroppers, Haunted Barn

The flavors of fall

Yes, I still exist.  Thank you to those who sent concerned emails.   Work has had me tied to my office desk for more than 12 hours a day, several days a week, in order to keep my head above water while working on big projects.  Add to that the Haunted Barn, which opened the last weekend of September, and you have madness and mayhem at Just Not Dinner.  Well, more madness and mayhem than usual.

The Man is supposed to begin working third shift tomorrow night.  Am I happy about this?  Well, let’s just say that nothing would really change, anyway, so why the heck not.

I have finished quite a few….or two…recipes that I am totally in love with.  The first one is below.  I have been eating variations of this muffin every day for breakfast since the middle of September (I will indicate variations in the recipe).  The house smells incredible while they bake and I have begun a little ritual with The Gidge – while these muffins are in the oven doing their thing, we dance around the kitchen to the tunes blaring out of the XM radio’s 80s channel.

Must create new traditions as the hairdropper I used to dance with now exists only in my heart.

I have been unable to watch the slideshow I created for Sylvester since the night I created and uploaded it.  In fact, since that night, my Windows Media Player has decided to shoot craps and I have to figure out why it doesn’t run.  But that’s not why I don’t watch those excellent memories.  I have created a little “Vester’s Corner” in the living room, with favorite photos, a poem about the Rainbow Bridge, and this poem.  When I can find a black corner shelf I like, I will put that up above the pictures and put his urn on it.

Sigh.  My heart still hurts daily.

But I have muffins.  Pumpkin apple muffins.  You can’t get much more “fall” than this.  In the photo, you see tonight’s batch.  This time around, I added the flaxseed meal and raisins but skipped the walnuts.

Pumpkin Apple Muffins

From the Vault

1/2 cup brown rice flour

1/4 cup amaranth flour

1/2 cup tapioca flour

1 1/4 tsp xanthan gum

2 tbsp flaxseed meal (optional – if used, add 1/4 cup water to liquid ingredients)

1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

3/4 tsp baking powder

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup canned pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling, please)

1/4 cup canola oil

1 egg

1/2 cup peeled & grated apple

1/2 cup raisins (optional)

1/4 cup walnuts (optional)

Raw sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line 9 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, sift together the brown rice flour, amaranth flour, tapioca flour, xanthan gum, pumpkin pie spice, and baking powder.  Stir in the flaxseed meal, if using.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, pumpkin, canola oil, and egg (and water if using flaxseed meal).  Add the apples, raisins and walnuts (if using).

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until moistened.  Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan.  Top with sprinkles of raw sugar.  Bake about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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