Cupcakes and Sunshine: Coconutty Sticky Toffee Breakfast Muffins (Healthy and dessert!)

Monday, September 30, 2013

Coconutty Sticky Toffee Breakfast Muffins (Healthy and dessert!)

I hope everyone had a fabulous Monday. 
Today was a busy, yet productive day. I started off the day by doing a quick workout to Justin Timberlake Pandora radio (seriously the best.) and then hopped on the transit bus to get to school. I took a quick quiz in Italian over our first chapter book we had to read. And then headed off to Political Science, Advertising, and my New Media class. 

I have absolutely been loving my New Media class. We have been divided into 15 groups of 15. And as a group, we are to work together to create technology/ an idea that will make a change in our community. Through social media, local businesses, and the technology itself, we are to communicate the idea and create a presentation in front of a panel. I am SO excited with what our group is putting together and I can't wait to share it with everyone in the near future. But right now, it's stop secret because we are competing with 14 other groups.  ;) 

Tonight, I tried a new pizza from my Trader Joe's haul. And to tell you the truth, it was quite meeehhhh. TJ's, I love you. I really do. But this was not my favorite. 

I was so excited about the "Corn Mesa Crust." But the pizza was quite flavorless and needed a gigantic spoonful of salsa and seasonings. The only thing that saved it was the avocado I cut up on top. I will not be making this purchase again. 

On a good note....
I made probably one of the best desserts/breakfasts I have ever had in my life. 

It is no secret that I have a sweet tooth. And yes, I love sweets for breakfast. I could just swaddle myself in a blanket of sweet, fluffy, syrup-y pancakes or French toast each morning. That’s a fact. 

One of my favorite desserts is sticky toffee pudding. It is a moist, rich, caramel-like dessert served with a delicious sweet sauce. I order it every time I see it on a menu at a restaurant. So I just had to alter it a bit to make it breakfast-y. The muffins are the perfect comfort food for these chilly fall mornings. Although the rumors for the origin of sticky toffee cake are varied, it is an English dessert often served with tea. But I love eating these sticky toffee muffins with coconut yogurt. and I know you will too.

This is a lightened up breakfast treat with whole grains and a little protein so you know you are starting your day off on the right foot. The sweet and salty sticky caramel sauce is. to. die. for. I want to slurp it with a straw and put it on everything. (waffles, ice-cream, toast...I'm talking to YOU.) and the sauce compliments the slightly sweetened muffin perfectly. The contrast between the warm muffin and the cold coconut yogurt is spectacular. And will just have to try it to see for yourself.

For the Muffins: 

¾ Cup White Whole Wheat Flour
¾ Cup All-purpose Flour
1 1/3 Cup Chopped Dates
1 ½ Cups Almond Milk
½ tsp. Baking Soda
¼ Cup Coconut Oil
¼ Cup Coconut Greek yogurt (vanilla would be fine here, but the coconut brings out the delicious coconutty sweetness. I used Chobani)
½ Cup Coconut Palm Sugar
¼ Cup dried coconut. (Sweetened or unsweetened. Your choice!)
1 tsp. Cinnamon
½ tsp. salt

For the salted caramel sauce: 

¼ Coconut Palm Sugar
¼ Cup Maple Syrup
3 Tbs. Butter (I used Organic)
1 Tbs. Vanilla Extract
1 Tbs. Almond Milk
1 tsp. salt

1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray (spray very well, they're sticky!)
2. In a sauce pan, bring almond milk to boil.
3. Once the almond milk comes to a boil, add in the dates. (I used dates that were already rolled in coconut and just chopped them up until I had 1 1/3 cup, but store bought chopped dates would be just fine) Let boil for about 1-2 minutes.
4. Remove boiling almond milk from heat and add in 1/2 tsp. of baking soda. (The mixture will be very bubbly after adding the baking soda)

5. In a separate bowl, mix together the 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar and the 1/4 cup coconut oil. Add the almond milk/date blend.
6. Now add the flours, coconut Greek yogurt, dried coconut, cinnamon, and salt and mix until incorporated.
7. Scoop batter into 12 muffins cups and bake for 18 minutes.

While muffins are baking,
bring all caramel sauce ingredients to a low boil. Boil for about 10 minutes, stirring often. (and watching carefully ensuring that sauce doesn't burn). Pour sauce into a bowl and place into the refrigerator to thicken. This makes the sauce sticky and wonderful. I would chill the sauce for at least an hour, but if you can't wait that long it still tastes amazing over the muffins. (Believe me, I know)

Remove muffins from tin and pour caramel sauce atop. Don't forget to add a baby scoop of the leftover coconut Greek yogurt to the top. Enjoy! And lick the plate clean. They are that good.



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