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Chai Muffins with Figs and Oats
(recipe, Alanna Kaufman & Alex Small)
Healthy yet filling, these muffins are great for breakfast and brunch. Alanna used to tote one to class every morning, but after letting her classmates have a taste, she ended up having to bring enough for everyone sitting around her. Now, we "forget" to tell people when we've made them, and we keep them for ourselves.
- 1¼ cups soy milk
- 2 tea bags of chai tea
- ½ cup rolled oats, plus extra for sprinkling
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1½ cups whole-wheat flour
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 3 tsp. baking powder
- ½ cup chopped dried figs
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 6 Tbsp. canola oil
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
- Heat the milk in a saucepan until hot to the touch. Remove from the heat; add the tea bags and let steep for 1 minute, until the milk is a light caramel brown.
- Put the oats in a small bowl and pour the milk and vanilla over them. Stir briefly, then let sit.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Stir in the figs, then the egg and the oil to lightly coat. Pour the oat mixture over the top and stir until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the muffin cups and top with a few extra oats. Bake 20 minutes. Transfer to cooling racks for several minutes, then serve.
Culinate editor's notes: You can use almond milk, rice milk, or regular milk in place of the soy milk. Let the tea bags steep for 3 to 5 minutes, not just one. Whole-wheat pastry flour makes for a lighter but still wheaty-tasting muffin. If you don't have dried figs, any moist dried fruit will do; try prunes or dried cherries. Chopped nuts would be a nice addition, too. And check the muffins after 15 or 16 minutes; they may well be done by then.