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Enjoying an Oat-Pecan Marmalade MuffinThere hasn’t been a lot of baking around my house since Epiphany (just lots of chocolate-making for my business, which doesn’t count), except for one absolutely brilliant batch of muffins.

A Tray of Oat-Pecan Marmalade MuffinsFor those of you who are regulars here, you probably remember the preserves from Deerview Fine Foods that I reviewed during the “Twelve Gifts of Christmas.” Deerview’s contribution to my prize hamper had included two jars of marmalade, a plain Seville orange one (which vanished within two weeks of opening) and a whisky marmalade, something that I had not even known existed.

Deerview MarmaladesDeerview Orange MaramladeThe marmalade was certainly delicious, but, finding the flavour a bit too strong for my taste to simply spread it over toast, I decided to bake something with it.

Soak the oats in yogurt Add the marmaladeStir in the pecansWhen we were kids, my mum used to make us muffins every week, usually with fresh blueberries or raspberries, but often in the winter she would use a fruit jam instead. It struck me that I could make a marmalade version of the muffins, and since the preserve is sweet already, I wouldn’t have to add any additional sugar!

Freshly Baked Oat-Pecan Marmalade MuffinsAlthough honestly, these muffins are so packed with healthy ingredients—oats, wholemeal spelt flour, pecans, yogurt—that a few tablespoons of sugar would probably be excusable. However, with luscious marmalade to sweeten them, you don’t need any sugar at all. The marmalade also imparts the loveliest orange flavour, which melds gorgeously with the oats and pecans. They are so scrumptious that I didn’t even mind skipping my usual weekend batch of cookies.

A Basket of Oat-Pecan Marmalade Muffins Oat-Pecan Wholemeal Muffins with Whisky MarmaladeI particularly recommend these muffins for kids’ lunch boxes, just as my mother used to bake her version for me and my siblings in our grade school days.

lavenderandlovage_teatimeI am sharing these muffins with Tea Time Treats, where the theme is packed lunches. I can’t imagine a healthier or more delicious treat to tuck into a lunchbox than these muffins! Tea Time Treats is co-hosted by Karen of Lavender and Lovage and Janie of The Hedgecombers; this month is Janie’s turn to host.

Baking with SpiritIt might be stretching things a bit, but as I used whisky marmalade, I am submitting the muffins to Cake of the Week’s Baking with Spirit as well. The theme was healthy, so the muffins definitely qualify for that part of the challenge!

CookBlogShareBake-of-the-weekI am also linking up with Supergolden Bakes #CookBlogShare and Casa Costello’s Bake of the Week.

An Oat-Pecan Marmalade MuffinOat-Pecan Marmalade Muffins

Ingredients:

1 cup (90 g.) rolled oats

1 cup (260 g.) low-fat plain yogurt

1 cup (150 g.) wholemeal spelt flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

¼ cup sunflower oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

¾ cup (240 g.) orange marmalade (you don’t have to use a whisky-flavoured one)

¾ cup (100 g.) pecans, finely chopped

2 egg whites

Technique:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper lines.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the oats and yogurt. Let stand five or ten minutes to soften the oats.
  3. Meanwhile, in another smaller bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and ginger.
  4. Beat the oil, vanilla, and marmalade into the oat mixture, and then lightly stir in the dry ingredients and pecans. You don’t want to mix it very thoroughly, as minimal stirring is a key to tender muffins; there should still be clumps of flour in the batter. They will be worked out when you fold in the egg whites during the next step.
  5. Set the muffin batter aside briefly while you whip the egg whites to soft peaks. You can do this by hand or in a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Fold the whipped whites gently into the muffin batter, just until no white streaks remain.
  6. Using a ¼ cup measure or similarly-sized cookie scoop, portion the batter into the lined muffin cups.
  7. Transfer to the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a muffin comes out clean, about 20 minutes.
  8. Remove the muffins from the pan and place them on a wire rack to cool.
  9. The muffins will keep for two days on the counter in an airtight container; after that, I suggest popping them in the freezer to preserve their fresh taste.

Yield: 1 dozen muffins

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