Thursday, April 10, 2008

Savory oatmeal muffins...

I knew that I was going to be preparing a soup for the main portion of this evening's dinner, but I wanted to serve something a little different to go along side. We often make sweet muffins that we snack on or have for dessert, but we changed things up tonight with these Savory Oatmeal Muffins I made.

We used white whole-wheat flour, but as usual, you don't need to run out and find it just for these muffins... you can just substitute regular all-purpose. White whole-wheat adds the nutrition we are looking for, without compromising the texture as the regular, but heavier, whole-wheat flour might do. Another of the dry ingredients to make the muffins a little healthier is old-fashioned rolled oats - you can use quick oats if you don't have the thicker variety on hand, but just don't use the instant variety.

While decidedly savory with ingredients like extra-sharp cheese, sage and lean Canadian bacon, these muffins do have a couple sweet aspects to them. Brown sugar and cinnamon lend an alluring sweetness, without making them seem sugary, if that makes any sense. If you like mixing up your pancakes or waffles with something savory like sausage, then these would be right up your alley. Buttermilk ensured the muffins stayed tender and quite moist - you'll notice that we soaked the oats in the buttermilk before using them. The oats don't absorb moisture quite as quick as flour, so you'll want to make sure you do this part so the batter isn't too runny. While good with the soup tonight, I think these muffins would also make for a fantastic on-the-go hearty breakfast with a quick re-heat in a toaster oven.

You may remember on Monday's post that we bought some sourdough bread this past weekend for a recipe later on this week. While we ended up using some of that bread for that delicious egg dish, we originally bought the bread to make croutons for this Spinach Soup with Rosemary Croutons.

We cubed up some of the tangy bread and tossed it with a good extra-virgin olive oil, a clove of minced garlic and fresh earthy rosemary. Scattered in a single layer on a baking sheet, the firm seasoned cubes quickly turned crisp and golden after just a few minutes in the oven. While those we baking away, the soup was started by softening onions, garlic and again, fresh rosemary, in a pat of melted butter. Diced red potatoes (peeled or not, up to you!) are added, followed by a few cups of vegetable broth. Once the potatoes had gotten tender enough, an ample amount of fresh spinach leaves are stirred in. One note - if the spinach at the market doesn't look too inviting, try this soup with the same volume of swiss chard leaves.

After a few more minutes of simmering, we pureed the soup with one of my favorite tools... an immersion blender! If you don't have this nifty tool, you could just as well use a blender or food processor - just place the soup back into the pot to warm it back up once you puree it. Jeff asked for a smooth soup, so that's what we did, but you could leave it a little on the chunky side if you want more texture from the potatoes to come through. This is quite the veggie-friendly soup as is, but if you are not concerned about that, I could definitely see topping this with a bit of crisped bacon for a smoky note.


  1. Yay for muffins with soup! :-)
    Looks like a another great muffin recipe to try!

  2. The spinach soup recipe looks great. I particularly like that it doesn't have any cream.

    I'm going to make those muffins. The hint of cinnamon paired with the other ingredients sounds delicious!

  3. bacon, oatmeal and cheese - these sound amazing! Looks like a hearty breakfast on the go!

  4. Mmmm...that soup sounds great! And it looks perfect for our crazy April least it stayed mostly rain and didn't really turn over to snow like they had predicted! I hope you don't regret moving to MN TOO much...!


  5. I had my eye on that soup. I may just have to bump that one up onto the menu.

  6. Erndog - and like most muffins, they froze well!

    Christina - It was quite tasty... savory, yet just slightly sweet.

    WFD - Definitely!

    Courtney - Ugh, I hope this whole cold weather snap is the last one and we can finally get some warmth! I grew up in MN, so I sadly know what this silly weather can do!

    Erika - Hope you give it a try soon!

  7. Loved the idea of savory oatmeal muffins..