I’ve had so much fun this week blogging about recipes inspired from storybooks. On Sunday, I prepared Chocolate Nut Butter Pies featured in my toddler’s board book on table manners. Next, I made some Spiced Chocolate Milk inspired by Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. When Valli announced the themes for this month’s Blogging Marathon I was really excited. For the third post, I was looking to create something from Hansel and Gretel. I even baked a big chocolate cake that I wanted to shape like an egg, hollow out and fill with some goodies like the chocolate egg filled with treasure that the brother-sister duo find at the witch’s chocolate house. But the cake was a disaster and I dropped the idea right there.But what I most wanted to make was something out of a Famous Five or Secret Seven book. I searched high and low for any book from either series, but couldn’t lay my hands on one. Actually, that is a big fat lie. I just asked my nephews to lend me one of these books, but did not manage to get one in time. I generally remember that the Five and the Seven normally got involved in adventures during their summer holidays that were full of ice-creams, popsicles, cakes, sandwiches, jams, buns and picnic baskets.
Since I couldn’t get hold of a book, I tried the next best alternative – google for e-books! And while Five on a Treasure Island was downloading, I came across this very interesting write-up in The Guardian which has a list of all foods that the Famous Five ate in the whole series, broken down into nutritional values. The writer quotes another article in his piece, which says,
The five always eat a balanced diet. Despite an abundance of Humbugs, toffees and ginger pop, over all 21 volumes, when grouped into the five main food categories (fruit and vegetable; meat and fish; dairy; starchy foods; high fat/sugar foods), no one category appears to outweigh another. This seems to come naturally to the children rather than by dictat from an adult. Sweets are eaten sparingly and hunks of crusty bread are often accompanied by handfuls of radishes or fresh fruit
This, the author attributes to the fact that the stories were written and set in the post WWII Britain when food rationing was the norm (Click here to read more about the Famous Five austerity diet). And that set me thinking. Why not prepare something that the Five would love, yet be totally healthy and not be excessive either? And I remembered this unique vegan muffin recipe that had whole wheat flour and coconut milk and used fermentation to help rise the batter like our own idli batter.
I followed the recipe to a T. You can refer to the original post for the recipe. Here are my notes:
1. I used regular whole wheat flour instead of the white whole wheat used in the original
2. I added more honey to balance out the somewhat bitter taste of wheat as the blogger suggested. I used ½ cup, against the ¼ cup in the recipe. I’d probably add an additional tbsp or two of honey next time.
3. I used 200 ml of Homemade brand of coconut milk. This is just 1 cup, while the recipe calls for 1 ½ cups, but since there was additional honey, the batter seemed fine. You could add a little additional water to adjust batter thickness if required
4. I used a mix of raisins, chopped almonds and chocolate chips instead of fresh fruit in the original recipe. I also made some plain one and some with raisins alone. I found the ones with nuts denser than the ones without, but were fine otherwise. They were also sticky when I tried peeling off the muffin liners, but weren’t sticky or chewy inside. They were nice with a soft crumb
And so, Dear Julian, Dick, Anne, George and Timmy, here are some muffins for your breakfast tomorrow. Hope you like them!