Start the year off right by receiving the offering of a complete, juicy orange.
Not discounting the benefits of spices, chocolate, walnuts and oatmeal of course.

Some new terms have come to my attention while researching the benefits of the orange.

The peel or zest is actually labelled as the 'Flavedo'.
Sounds logical enough since the peel is where all the intense flavours…
from the essential oils and vitamin C are concentrated.

The inner white pith which supports the oils and is rich in pectin is called the 'Albedo'.

The juicy pulp segments are delicately embraced with…
'Vesicles' which in turn are tightly hugged by a membrane.

Now, that almost sounded exquisitely romantic.
Still there? 
Humour me and get with my program…
especially since the holidays have brought on so many guilty pleasures. 

Aren't you pleased that I can bring you into my little fantasy whereby…
an orange can not only be healthy but bring romance to your table? 
Try it and let me know how it works for you.
If nothing else…the new vocabulary alone will impress.
If not…at least there will be delicious muffins to share.

Moist, aromatic, flavourful and dare I say, a much healthier version of the 'Sunshine muffin'.
ALL done in the food processor.
These tweaked muffins are mildly sweet…
however, add more sugar if you can handle it.

ORANGE spice Sunshine Sister muffins

Makes 12 muffins

(American measures)

WET mix:
. 1 medium, navel orange
. 1/2 cup granulated sugar (mildly sweet results)
. 2 xLarge eggs
. 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
. 1/2 cup Orange juice*
. 2 tsps. pure Vanilla extract
. 2 tsps. Apple cider vinegar
DRY mix:
. 1 cup All-Purpose flour
. 1 cup Oatmeal flour (ground from rolled oats)
. 1 tsp. Baking powder
. 1/2 tsp. Baking soda
. 1/4 tsp. sea salt
. 1/2 tsp. ground Cardamom spice
. 1/2 tsp. ground Anise seed
. 1/2 tsp. ground Cinnamon spice
. 1/2 cup raw Walnuts
. 1/4 cup semi-sweet Chocolate chips
. 1/4 cup dried fruit of choice (optional)

* Or use 3 Tbsps. orange concentrate filled with water to make a complete 1/2 cup volume.


. Pre-heat the oven to 375F.   
. Position the rack in the center of the oven.
. Prepare a muffin pan with paper liners.  
Note: oil spray will be used only right before spooning in the batter.

1. Except for the add-ins, place the DRY ingredients into a medium bowl.  Set aside.
2. Scrub and wash the orange very well.  Cut it into 8 wedges and remove the thick center membrane.  Place them into a large food processor.   Add the eggs and sugar.   Pulse a few times at first and then continue whirling for about 30 seconds on HIGH speed.
3. Lower the speed and pour the combined oil, orange juice, vanilla and vinegar through the feeding tube.  Raise the speed again and keep whirling for about one more minute until the mix is fluffy.  Stop the processor.
4. Add in the prepared DRY ingredient mix.  Once again, pulse a few times before whirling a few more seconds just until combined. 
5. Now, the add-ins can be incorporated with not more than 3 pulses.
6. Spray a tiny spot of oil into every paper liner.  Spoon in the batter to fill the lined cavities evenly (almost full).  Optional: garnish with a few flakes of rolled oats.
7. BAKE them for 20 minutes in a dark muffin pan or 22 minutes in a lighter pan.
NOTE:  When you take them out, do NOT wait longer than 5 minutes to extract them out of their cavities and onto a rack.  Yes, they will still be hot, but not unmanageable.  This will stop the muffin from over baking and will keep the liners from sticking too much to the muffin.   When ready to peel the cupcake paper liners, be patiently gentle. 

The 'Sunshine muffin' developed by the 'Best of Bridge' group has come through many ovens and lips…however, putting my particular spin on it proved to be successful after tweaking it several times.  Therefore, ready to start the year off on the right muffin?  Join me and bring happiness to you and your loved ones.

May this newest year bring you all the health, peace and joy that you deserve.

Flavourful wishes,

Comments ... ??? ... or suggestions ... write me :o)
Claudia at:  foodessa [at] gmail [dot] com

Go HERE for more SWEET creations.

Please take note on how I bake and cook...
Here’s a 101 of sorts to make sure that there are no disappointments when trying my creations.  
Also...just so you know...feel free to increase the salt and sweet factor since I'm not high on either of them ;o)

. Use DRY cup measurements for...you guessed it...all DRY ingredients.
Anything DRY gets measured by spooning the overfilled ingredient (never shake the cup) and then level off with a flat edged tool.  Exception...Brown sugar should be packed in and leveled.
. Use LIQUID cup measurements for...all LIQUIDS that cannot be leveled like for example butter, yogurt...etc.  Measure the liquids at eye level to avoid overdoing what the recipe truly needs.
OVENS are unfortunately not created equal.  Mine is so old that it has reached many degrees off it's norm.  It's really worth investing a few dollars to test yours with an appropriate oven thermometer.  You'd be surprised how many ovens I've heard about not being where they should have been.  Before you lose any more ingredients and much time preparing a new recipe...run to the store...you'll thank me later.