Sugar and spice and all things nice, that’s what little baked treats are made of. In my house, spice reigns supreme especially when the nights grow darker and winter deepens. Warm yourself by the oven and make a batch of my Ginger and Apple Muffins to share with some sweet friends.
Were you taught the ‘what little girls are made of’ rhyme as a child? I remember hearing ‘sugar and spice and all things nice, that’s what little girls are made of’ now and again as a little girl. As a grown woman, I like to think that I have grown up to be a good mix of sugar and spice, but I just know my personality errs on the spicy side most of the time. Oh, and I have a surprisingly salty vocabulary (that’s what comes from being an ex-Navy cook’s daughter) that comes in handy from time to time (especially when you forget to use a tea towel to grab a sheet pan out of the oven…
When it comes to baking I am definitely a spice lover. Opening each different jar or grating and grinding the fresh spices instantly whisks me away. Spices connect us to other places and times. The scent of cardamom is my Danish grandmother’s kitchen where abelskiver are cooking on the stove. Cinnamon is the bakery in New York where my best friend and I recovered from a long flight. And ginger, ginger is my Mum dunking gingersnap cookies into ice cold milk on a summer afternoon. Ginger is home.
These muffins are for cold mornings in the kitchen, tramping around in stocking feet and brewing strong black builder’s tea, chopping dusky skinned apples and waking up slowly to the aroma of ginger and brown sugar warming in the oven. These Ginger and Apple Muffins are damp and sweet from brown sugar and golden syrup and studded with chunks of tart apple. They bake up tall and generous and make a house smell like home. Invite someone over, anyone, these muffins are gluten free and vegan so everyone can enjoy them, or eat them alone with only a book and the slow-rising sun for company.
Ginger and Apple Muffins
Vegan | Gluten Free | Makes 12 large muffins
- 80 grams brown rice flour
- 80 grams buckwheat flour
- 80 grams white rice flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/4 cup rice bran oil (or other flavourless vegetable oil e.g. grapeseed)
- 2 tablespoons golden syrup
- 100 grams brown sugar
- 2 medium apples (Sundowner are my favourites)
- Preheat your oven to 200C (400F) and line a 12 cup muffin tin with baking papers.
- In a large mixing bowl whisk together brown rice flour, buckwheat flour, white rice flour, baking powder, salt, and spices.
- In a separate bowl whisk together almond milk, oil, golden syrup, and brown sugar until smooth and well combined.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
- Quarter and core one of the apples, and chop into cubes. Mix into batter until distributed.
- Divide batter between muffin papers.
- Quarter and core the second apple. Cut into thin slices and place a few on top of each muffin.
- Bake muffins in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Cool for 5 minutes in the tin, then remove. These are best eaten the day they are made, but can be wrapped in plastic wrap (once completely cooled) and frozen for up to two months.