Many of my close friends are (no doubt) astonished to see me blogging right now. And for those of you who don’t know me personally, the reason for that is because our family is in the midst of a tragedy. My dad is critically ill with cancer and in the hospital. He found out about the cancer just 12 days ago, and his condition dive-bombed from that moment forward. He is currently on life-support.
You would think life might cut me a little slack right now, after the year I’ve had… and you and I would agree on that point. I can’t begin to comprehend why this is happening to us right now. The past 12 days have been agonizing… terrifying… heartbreaking. We (my siblings and our spouses) are doing the only thing we can do, clinging to one another, clinging to God, and living at that hospital praying every moment to see the numbers on those monitors go up.
If you would like a bit more detail about how my dad is doing, we have set up this Caring Bridge site, which I try to update each time we get new news.
As far as blogging goes, my explanation for why I continue is this: It is therapeutic to me. To quote the famed Pioneer Woman, “I am a blogger. And bloggers blog.” More than that… cooking is therapeutic to me. When I come home from a long, gut-wrenching day at the hospital, I don’t want to watch TV. I don’t want to immerse myself in the chatter of Facebook or Twitter. I want to do mindless, wordless things like clean my house, cook food, or sleep. I want to do something productive with my hands that allows me to simultaneously cry my eyes out. So cooking, cleaning, and sleeping it is.
This week, I made these muffins, which I have had on my “Must-Try” List for quite some time. They ended up being the perfect thing to have on hand for quick, on-the-go breakfasts as I rushed out the door to the hospital each day. I definitely wanted to share the recipe with you.
This recipe came from a blogger I love to follow, Gabi of Honest Fare. She is a woman of many talents: Blogger, Food Truck Operator & Chef, Health Food Guru, Photographer… she has even designed a simple, chic line of cooking linens (aprons and towels, etc) that are just gorgeous. So yeah, your basic domestic goddess.
When I saw these muffins on her site, I wanted to melt into my chair. They just sounded sooo good. Pineapple? Coconut? Macadamia butter? The only thing better would be actually getting on a plane and flying to Hawaii.
And if you are someone who keeps an eye out for gluten-free and/or vegan recipes… Surprise! This happens to be one. (The muffins are gluten-free and the macadamia butter is sinfully, exquisitely vegan.) I don’t personally follow a gluten-free or a vegan diet myself, but that’s irrelevant when it comes to these muffins. They are truly indulgent!
The only thing I will say about them (by way of warning) is that hard-core wheat flour lovers might turn up their noses at them. You see… baked goods made with oat flour tend to turn out slightly stickier (dare I say, gummier?) than their wheat-flour counterparts. This does not bother me one bit, since I love oatmeal in all its gummy glory. But my sister, for example, took one bite of these muffins and said, “Do you want to finish this?”
So… bottom line: Maybe not for everyone. But for me? Heck yes.
Here’s the printable recipe for ya! And here’s the link to the recipe on Honest Fare, in case you’d like to see the full step-by-step photo tutorial Gabi posted (or the pictures from her trip to Hawaii, which provided the inspiration for these cray-cray muffins in the first place.)
- For the Gluten-Free Muffins:
- 1 ¼ cup rolled oats
- 1 ½ cup oat flour
- ½ cup dried coconut flakes (sweetened OR unsweetened)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup plain, low fat yogurt
- ½ cup coconut milk (room temp, blend well before measuring)
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- ⅓ cup coconut oil (melted)
- 1 lightly beaten egg (room temp)
- ½ ripe banana mashed
- 1 cup diced, fresh pineapple + extra for topping
- For the Vegan Macadamia Butter:
- 1½ cup roasted, salted macadamia nuts
- Drizzle of agave (or maple) syrup
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- For the Muffins:
- Preheat oven to 375°
- Mix rolled oats, yogurt and coconut milk together in a bowl. Let stand for 10 minutes.
- Now, combine oat flour, salt, sugar, dried coconut flakes, baking powder and baking soda in a separate bowl. Set aside.
- Dice pineapple and mash banana. Combine mashed banana, pineapple, egg and oil together in a bowl and add to the rolled oat mixture. Mix well.
- Now add dry oat flour mixture to rolled oat mixture and mix together well.
- Fill greased or lined muffin cups ⅔ of the way. Bake for approximately 16-20 minutes.
- For the Macadamia Butter:
- Place macadamia nuts, coconut oil and agave in food processor and whiz until very creamy and smooth. (Give your food processor breaks if you start to smell smoke!) Place in fridge to set.
Let me know how you like them! And thank you to everyone who has already communicated such love and care for me and my siblings as we navigate this life storm with our Dad’s health. Your love and support have been life-giving. God bless you.
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