Whole Wheat & Chickpea Flour Pineapple Bran Muffins
To be totally honest, I am so new at learning to bake with chickpea flour and I'm feeling really behind the times! Truth be told the first recipe I tried with chickpea flour (another muffin recipe) I was really disappointed and did not like the taste of it at all. But I love the idea of using chickpea flour in my baking because it's another way to incorporate prebiotic fibre into my family's diet.
For those wondering what the heck prebiotics are (nope, it's not a typo - different than PROBIOTICS), prebiotics are food for your gut microbes. It gets a bit tricky because not all fibre is prebiotic, but all prebiotics are a type of fibre. According to Monash University, Department of Gastroenterology, "To be classified as a prebiotic, the fibre must pass through the GI tract undigested and stimulate the growth and/or activity of certain 'good' bacteria in the large intestine. Prebiotics include fructans and galacto-oligosachairdes (GOS)". Guess what? Chickpeas are a GOS (well, and whole grain wheat is a fructan)! While scientists are still detailing the benefits of prebiotics to human health, research is starting to show that prebiotics may benefit humans by: enhancing the diversity of the gut microbiota, improving mineral absorbtion, protecting against colon cancer, improving blood glucose and insulin levels, and may support some inflammatory conditions.
For this recipe I took the idea of a traditional bran muffin and played around with different fruit flavours and with the chickpea flour. My toddler is currently going through a pineapple phase and this recipe provides a safe, non-choking way for him to enjoy pineapple. I was able to cut the sugar a little but I also didn't want to compromise the taste! I'm all for healthier options, but food still has to taste good. These muffins are fluffy, filling and my toddler eats them!
Preheat oven to 400F
1 cup wheat bran
1 cup cows milk (2% or 3%) + 1 tbsp lemon juice (or use Buttermilk)
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup crushed canned pineapple, drained
1) In a large bowl, mix the wheat bran and the lemon/milk mixture and let soak for a few minutes.
2) Add the oil, egg, vanilla, and brown sugar and mix well.
3) In a separate bowl, mix the whole wheat flour, chickpea flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Then add this to the larger bowl containing the wheat bran mixture.
4) Finally add the crushed pineapple and mix well with a wooden spoon (if using an electric beater, don't over-beat).
5) Scoop raw mixture equally into 12 muffin cups and bake at 400F x 15 minutes
Submitted by Brooke Bulloch, RD