Thursday, May 17, 2012

Gluten Free Blueberry Coconut Muffins with Coconut Streusel Topping




The first time I cut wheat from my diet, I lost ten pounds in two months. I was eating salads and nuts and lean protein and very little gluten substitutes.  My intention had mainly been to be healthy, not to lose weight, but it sure was a great bonus. I felt lighter and better all over.  And then I started to discover things... like gluten free cupcakes! And cookies! And Nanaimo bars!

Uh ooooh.

Turns out a lot of chocolate bars are gluten free, same goes for ice cream. And chips. And popcorn.  Then of course I started to try out things like wheat free breads, pastas, and cereals. I found there are some fantastic substitutes out there. I realized that living gluten free might not have to mean living without all of these delicious foods. 

But it does mean I'll have to get my butt to the gym. Especially if I keep eating these muffins!




As I mentioned yesterday, I am brand new to the world of gluten free baking.  And a bit intimidated by it at that. So, I chose to eliminate some of the guess work involved and use a pre-made gluten free flour blend here. I'm not up for having to buy and measure out 8 different flours quite yet. I'm just dipping my toes in here.

To be perfectly honest, I was completely surprised by how easy and good these muffins turned out to be. I had myself convinced that gluten free baking was hard, something I couldn't possibly master. And that the results would suck. I have tried some wheat free baked goods that simply don't measure up to their gluten-y counter parts. They can be overly dense, dry, grainy and just plain YUCK.

But these little cuties puffed up beautifully in the oven and are moist and tender and bursting with sweet blueberries. And that topping. It's ridiculous. This is such a great beginner recipe. I brought the muffins to a picnic and even my wheat-eating friends loved them!




Gluten Free Blueberry Coconut Streusel Muffins

This recipe can very easily be made dairy free too, just swap the butter in the batter  for oil, and the butter in the topping for dairy free margarine or coconut oil.


Makes 16 Muffins

Ingredients

1 1/2 Cups all purpose gluten free flour mix (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1/2 Cup shredded unsweetened coconut
2 Teaspoons baking powder
1 Teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 Teaspoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon cinnamon
2/3 Cup light brown sugar
1/3 Cup melted butter
2 Large eggs
1 Teaspoon vanilla extract (gluten free)
1 1/4 Cups coconut milk
1 1/2 Cups fresh blueberries

Streusel Topping

1/3 Cup butter, melted
1/2 Cup brown sugar
1/3 Cup all purpose gluten free flour
2/3 Cup coconut (I used half shredded and half coconut ribbons)

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, coconut, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.

2. In separate bowl, or the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the butter, sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and beat well. With mixer on low, alternate between adding the flour mixture and coconut milk until just combined. Gently fold in the blueberries.

3. Mix all ingredients for topping together in a small bowl. Use an ice cream scoop to fill liners about 2/3 full with muffin batter. Press 1-2 Tablespoons of topping on to each muffin. Bake for 20-25 minutes, rotating once halfway through, until topping is browned and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from pan to cool.

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.




I am submitting this post to Food Allergy Awareness Day hosted by Tastespotting and the FIAPlease note that this recipe has not been reviewed by FAI or medical experts. Avoidance is the only accepted course of treatment for food allergy. Always verify ingredients or food products by checking with the manufacturer and/or your physician to ensure that any foods are safe for your unique allergy issues.



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