I was gearing up to make a batch of bran muffins this morning when I realized I only had 10-grain hot cereal mix instead of the wheat bran. Instead of just the bran, the mix contains red wheat, rye, oats, corn, barley, soy beans, brown rice, millet, and flaxseed. Happy wholesome ingredients yes, but I worried about the grains not absorbing enough liquid to soften up inside of the muffin. Now that I’ve eaten two of them, I can confidently claim that these are awesome – I actually prefer the crunchy texture inside.
Hearing great things about the La Brea Bakery in LA, I found a version of their bran muffins on David Lebovitz’s website. I didn’t have all of the right ingredients so I listed what I actually used below.
- 2 cups 10-grain hot cereal mix
- 1 cup, plus 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1 cup, plus 1/2
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- a few swipes of fresh orange or lemon zest
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg white
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or silicone liners.
2. Spread the wheat bran or hot cereal mix on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for six to eight minutes, stirring a few times so it cooks evenly. Let cool.
3. While the cereal is toasting, heat 1 cup of the raisins with 1/2 cup of the water. Simmer for ten minutes, or until the water is all absorbed. Puree the raisins in a food processor or blender until smooth.
4. In a large bowl, mix together the toasted cereal, buttermilk, 1 cup water, then mix in the raisin puree, zest, and brown sugar.
5. Stir in the oil, egg, egg white, and vanilla.
6. Mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, and sift directly into the wet ingredients. Stir until the ingredients are just combined, then mix in the remaining 1/2 cup raisins.
7. Spoon the batter into the muffin tins, making sure the batter is mounded slightly in each one. Because muffin tins can very in size, if your tins are larger, make fewer muffins.
8. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the muffins feel set in the center.
9. Let cool in muffin tins for 5 minutes and then carefully remove to cool on a rack.