Wednesday, May 30, 2007


In this house we're trying to reduce our consumption of prepared breakfast cereals and milk. We found this food was taking over breakfast, lunch and often all the day's snacks, dominating the kids' caloric intake because of its convenience. Whether doctored up with refined sugars and chemicals or not, I just haven't been comfortable with this processed-food-from-afar filling my kids up day after day, either from a nutritional or environmental standpoint. The kids like rice, soy and nut milks, but I could not abide the tetrapak packaging, or the fuss involved in making them from scratch. We drink cow's milk, but again, all in moderation.

We discussed the issue and the main solution the kids came up with was more muffins. So I've been trying to get into a routine of morning muffin-baking. I have a few good recipes that the kids love, but I'd love to move in the direction of honey and whole grains, so I'm on the lookout for things that they enjoy as much that don't contain the processed sugars and flour.

The other solution we decided upon was to purchase a soymilk maker. We eventually settled on the Soyabella, since I quite sensibly realized that ease of cleanup was probably the number one determinant of how much use the unit would get. We're thrilled with it. Each night I set up some rice, soybeans, almonds or cashews to soak, and each morning I run the Soyabella. I flavour it up with a pinch of salt, some honey, and sometimes some vanilla, cocoa or decaf coffee. A week's supply of organic soybeans costs us about $1.50. (Our fall wholesale nut order cost us considerably more than that, but it was so long ago now that it doesn't count.)

So now my morning routine, before the kids get up, often comprises a batch of muffins and a batch of soy or rice milk. And my trusty pot of coffee, of course. I'm not so virtuous as to have given that up, though I am up to 2/3 decaf.

Shawna asked about my rhubarb muffin recipe. That's a rhubarb muffin in the photo and the recipe is transcribed below. I'm also including our cashew milk recipe, which is delicious and can be easily made just using a blender, without any fuss:

Rhubarb Muffins

2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup oil
1 cup yogourt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
1 cup fairly finely chopped fresh rhubarb

1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp. butter, melted

In large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, salt and baking soda. In a small bowl, mix together oil, yogourt, vanilla and egg. Mix wet ingredients with dry. Add rhubarb. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin tin. Mix together topping ingredients and sprinkle on top of muffin batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350 F. Makes 12.

Cashew Milk

1/2 cup millet
2/3 cup water
1 cup cashews, soaked in water for 4 hours
2 Tbsp. honey (to taste)
1/4 tsp. salt
Additional water as necessary

Place millet and water in a small saucepan. Bring to boil, reduce heat to low, cover and cook 20 minutes. Remove from heat to cool somewhat. Place cashews, millet and remaining ingredients in blender. Add a couple of cups of additional water, or as much as is required to allow the blender to run quickly and efficiently. Run blender on highest speed until mixture is very very smooth. Pour milk into a jug and store in fridge. To drink, dilute 1:1 with water and stir. Delicious warm or cold. Keeps in fridge for about 48 hours.


  1. Another recipe to put in my cook book.

  2. Yum! Thank you so much--my plant has just about taken over the corner of the yard it resides in LOL And my rhubarb cobbler is tasty, but can get old after awhile :-)

  3. Those muffins sound delicious! We're big muffin eaters here so it's great to find new recipes. We use alternate milks in our baking due to allergies in the family, so I'm now also interested in the Soyabella. Thanks for sharing that!

  4. I kicked my cereal habit about a year ago and have not looked back, for all the reasons you listed (cereal for breakfast, lunch, and dinner - how easy!). I, too, took on the task of making breakfasts for the family. I have a great waffle recipe, and also found a decent whole wheat pancake recipe that doesn't leave you with hockey pucks. And while I have a great zucchini muffin recipe, it has far too much sugar in it. So I'll be trying your rhubarb muffin recipe as soon as I can get my hands on some rhubarb. Thanks for posting this, and do share any more good muffin recipes you get!

  5. A decent whole wheat pancake recipe that doesn't result in hockey pucks? Care to share? We just ran out of pancake mix yesterday, and a ww recipe was on my mind.

  6. They enjoyed the muffins!!!

  7. YUM! Thanks for sharing the recipe!


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