ways to unplug.

There are many ways to unplug when you are stressed out.  For instance:

– turn off your cell phone
– take a hot bath
– listen to smooth jazz
– take a laxative
– eat some fibre

Har har har!  Ah yes, you can unplug, or you can unplug.  Sometimes those inner tubes need a little help, no?  Everyone gets stressed and everyone gets constipated, so I think we ought to loosen our belts a little and talk it out, nothing to be ashamed of.

What helps me maintain a steady flow in life and Down Under is to eat things that make me happy.  Happy mind, happy body.  These blueberry bran muffins fit the bill, because they are tasty, and also help keep things rolling.  Two benefits in one little round mound of fun!

This recipe is based off one in Dan Lepard’s Short and Sweet: The Best of Home Baking.

Blueberry Bran Muffins

makes 12-16, depending on how big you make’em

1 cup milk
1-1/3 cups wheat bran
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp fancy molasses
2/3 cup sunflower oil
2 eggs
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp ground ginger
1/3 cup white sugar
about 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Heat the milk until it almost boils.  Pour it over the bran and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl.  Beat until it is smooth and mushy, and then let it sit for 5-10 minutes so the bran can absorb the moisture.  This is a good time to preheat your oven to 400 F, drop paper liners into your muffin tin, and turn up the volume on that smooth jazz.  To the bran mixture, add the molasses, sunflower oil and eggs, beating until smooth.  Sift over the flour, baking powder, ginger and sugar.  Fold everything together gently, and then fold in the blueberries gently too.  Spoon the batter into the muffin tin, and let the batter sit for about 10 minutes.  Someone once told me that muffins will rise better when you let the batter sit before baking, and they ballooned up nicely this time, so I think it is worth the extra wait!  Bake the muffins for 25-30 minutes, until the tops are lightly browned.  Let cool on a rack.  Eat with generous dabs of butter, and perhaps some blueberry jam, because too many blueberries is impossible.

blueberry bran muffins portrait of a muffin

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