Introduction: Azuki Bean (Red Bean), Carrot, and Blueberry Muffin
I have tried many muffin recipes. This is the one that stopped further trying. It's the best of the best.
It is a result of solve two cooking needs in one recipe. On one hand I have always been and is still researching and developing healthy, nutritious, delicious, can-be-eaten hot or cold, and school lunch box favorite foods. On the other, I'm always making red bean paste/butter, I need a recipe to use the above strainer coarse part. When I replaced the flour in one of the muffin recipes I tried (which uses minimal fat and sugar, thus healthy) , it resulted in amazingly delicious muffins. All it took was a little experiment.
It only makes sense that using whole beans instead of the above strainer coarse part should work, if not better. And it was proved to be true. So this recipe uses the whole bean.
According to nutrition facts of raw Azuki beans, it contains about 20% protein (wheat flour contains about 10% protein), 63% total carbohydrate (wheat flour contains about 73% total carbohydrate), and 13% fiber (amazing) (wheat flour contains only about 3% fiber). So it makes this recipe a whole lot healthier.
Step 1: Ingredients
1 cup dry red bean (Azuki bean) (makes 2 1/3 cups to 3 cups mashed bean paste)
2 medium carrots, finely chopped
1/3 cup dried blue berries (or raisins)
1/2 cup pastry flour
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground all spice
1/3 cup desiccated shredded coconut
2 tbsp molasses
3 tbsp boiling water
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 egg, beaten
24 dark chocolate chips
Baking temperature: 350F
Baking time: 20-25 Minutes
Step 2: Prepare the Beans
Rinse the beans.
Soak the beans in cool water overnight (if you skip soaking, your cooking takes longer).
Drain soaking water and cook the beans by boiling until easy to mash.
Sit strainer on top of a large bowl and drain the cooked beans.
Mash the cooked beans with a potato or avocado masher.
Set aside the mashed bean for combining with other ingredients.
1. The large bowl is to collect the liquid. After it settles, there is quite some fine bean paste settles at the bottom. To dump it is a sink clogging risk and wasting, pull that together with the mashed bean.
2. You should end up with 2 1/3 cups to 3 cups mashed bean. The mashed bean portion should not be less than 2 1/3 cups, or the batter will be too thin; or more than 3 cups, or the batter will be thick and you'll end up to use two muffin pans or bake in two batches.
Step 3: Prepare the Batter
In a mixing bowl, place dry ingredients: pastry flour, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, all spice, desiccated shredded coconut, and dried blueberry together, breaking lumps, mix them well.
Add chopped carrot, mix well.
Add mashed bean, mix well.
In another mixing bowl, add wet ingredients: molasses, boiling water, vegetable oil and egg together, beaten well.
Combine dry and wet materials, blend well.
Step 4: Bake the Muffins
Now is a good time to preheat the oven to 350F.
Line the muffin pan with paper cups.
If you happen to run out of paper cups, no worry. Just place the muffin pan in the hot oven for a few minutes and then brush butter on the walls of each cups for easy removal of muffins later.
Spoon the batter to each cups 3/4 full.
Place one dark chocolate chip on top of each muffin.
To brighten the color for presentation purpose, you can use rainbow colored dark chocolate M&M. For your own consumption, the Ghirardelli dark chocolate chips taste better. I like to use only one. For chocolate, less is more.
Bake muffins 20-25 minutes or until toothpick insert in the center and come out clean.
Step 5: Enjoy!
I only wish technology can deliver taste. These muffins taste really delicious. There is nothing not good about them. They taste equally amazing when cold so they have been life savors for me. My child takes them to school a lot times and eat all. Because they are healthy, they contribute to the life long gift to my child: a healthy body and healthy eating.
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