Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Cleaning out the Crisper

Tonight I was looking at some leftover stuff in the crisper (notably one zucchini and half a bag of dried out baby carrots) and contemplating throwing them out. It seemed wasteful but didn't know when I'd be using those vegetables and I didn't want them to turn into slime in the bottom of the crisper drawer. Then, I remembered this recipe from a recent issue of Cooking Light and made some muffins after baby girl was asleep tonight.

All the ingredients were things that I had and the batter came together quickly. I made a few changes - added the flax seed, used plain yogurt instead of buttermilk, and used half whole wheat flour. I also reduced the sugar quite a bit thinking that the sweetness of the apples and carrots would compensate for that. Check out the original recipe if you want to. The end result was a little dense but moist and sweet enough for me. They were easier than and tasted better than I remember the Apple Bran Muffins. What a great way to eat vegetables!

Apple Carrot Zucchini Muffins (10 muffins*)

1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/3 c. sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup grated peeled Granny Smith apple (about 1 medium)
1/2 cup grated carrot (about 1 medium)
1/2 cup shredded zucchini
2 T ground flax seed (optional)
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup lowfat plain yogurt (or equal amount non-fat buttermilk)
2 large eggs

Preheat oven to 325. Combine both flours and the next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add grated apple, grated carrot, shredded zucchini, and flax seed to flour mixture; toss well. Combine canola oil, yogurt, and eggs in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add egg mixture to flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Spoon batter into 10 prepared muffin cups (greased pan or paper liners). Bake for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

*You can alternately make one loaf by pouring the batter into a greased loaf pan and baking at 325 for 50 minutes. Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack and then cool completely before slicing.


  1. I don't think I have ever heard anyone call it a crisper. But, on the other hand, who talks about their crisper?

    Good idea for random veggies in the drawer.

  2. I think I'll try those and tinker around with the ingredients a bit more...Like use date sugar (pulverized dates) in place of sugar and maybe brown rice flour in place of white flour. It's tough experimenting sometimes with expensive ingredients because I'm always concerned that I've wasted food if something doesn't turn out.

    For some reason, maybe because it's the season, zucchini and carrot muffins sound extra delicious. My zucchini just sprouted in my garden this week!

  3. I haven't experimented much with alternative flours but a friend of mine made muffins with coconut flour and agave sweetener that were amazing.

    Fresh zucchini sounds awesome!

  4. Spices: 1/2 tsp. cardamom, 1/2 tsp. ginger, 1 tsp. cinnamon
    Sweetener: 1/4 c. sugar, 2 T honey
    Added 1/2 c. sweetened, shredded coconut