October 28, 2013

sea salt chocolate muffins

Sea salt chocolate muffin

On some mornings, all I want is a muffin, a deep and dark chocolate muffin with my coffee. Okay, perhaps more than one would be ideal and even perfect but either way I really like a good dose of cocoa in them. It's really the best way for me to double my daily am dose of caffeine with a whole lot of joy! Coffee with chocolate it can't get any better than that.

Brown sugar

I never ate a lot of muffins because most of the time they were either too sweet or too greasy and they also never had any interesting flavors that I would have wanted to try. Personally, I like my breakfast muffins to be multigrain or wholegrain based and I am a big fan of oat and oat bran in the mornings. So with the desire to keep things wholesome, I added a couple of different flours into the batter; oat bran, brown rice and whole-wheat give a delicious soft and grainy texture. 

Sea salt chocolate muffins

This is a very deep dark chocolatey muffin with a little bit of sea salt on the crust. When you take a bite into the muffin, the combination of the sea salt with the dark chocolate is simply amazing. The flavors intensify and every subsequent bite is even more exciting than the first, exactly the way I'd like to start my mornings. 

Muffin cocoa and salt

You only need to sprinkle a few salt crystals on top of each muffin, halfway through baking. If you put them on before they will start to sink which is why I recommend placing them once the muffins are slightly firm on the surface but not completely baked. I used a standard 12 cup muffin pan to bake these guys and you could use a smaller sized 24 cup pan as well, just make sure you divide the batter equally between the cups in the pan. You can eat these muffins warm or even at room temperature. Store them in an airtight container for up to 4 days. 

Whole grain sea salt chocolate muffin


sea salt chocolate muffins

yields: 12 muffins

ingredients 

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon dark roast instant coffee powder
1/2 cup oat bran
1/2 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 stick unsalted butter, chilled
1 2/3 cups brown sugar
5 large eggs, chilled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used the madagascar bourbon variety)
1/2 cup plain non-fat greek yogurt, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons sea salt crystals

1. Preheat the oven to 350F and place the wire rack in the middle position. Line a standard muffin cake pan with baking cup liners. 
Mix and sift all the dry ingredients from the cocoa to the baking powder.  Transfer any grain bits back to the dry mix. Keep aside.
2. Cube the butter and transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the sugar and fix the paddle attachment to the mixer. Cream the butter and sugar on medium low speed for 5 minutes. Add one egg at a time and beat until completely smooth.  Add the vanilla and mix for another 30 seconds on medium low speed. 
3. Add half of the sifted dry ingredients from step 1 to the creamed eggs. Mix on medium low speed until smooth and completely blended, approximately 3 minutes. Add the yogurt to the batter and beat for 1 minute. Add the rest of the dry ingredients and beat for another 3 minutes until completely mixed.
4. Divide the batter equally among the muffin pan cups. Bake the muffins for 12 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle the salt crystals over the muffins. Return the pan to the oven and bake for another 8-10 minutes until the centers are firm to touch or skewer comes out clean from the center of the muffin. Allow the muffins to cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool further.

28 comments:

  1. Your recipe sounds absolutely delicious! Brown sugar- cocoa and salt crystals -Can’t wait to try it! and photos are incredible as always.

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  2. I'm sold, Nik! We also love chocolate muffins. I love using whole wheat pastry flour for the extra texture and bit of nuttiness. Oat bran and brown rice flour sound like great, too. And I can imagine how moist these are with the yogurt. My 8 yr old loves chocolate yogurt muffins - he doesn't miss the frosting at all, which is surprising!

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    1. That is so cool that he does not miss frosting one bit! I'm not a big frosting person either.

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  3. Oh, I'd love to eat one of those wonderful muffins right now!!! A great flavor combination.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  4. I must make these glorious looking appetizing chocolate muffins tomorrow because they look mouthwatering! OOOh yes. ��

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  5. coffee+ chocolate = best way to start the morning, even better with sea salt on top.

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  6. I love the healthy touch you gave to the muffins. It sure does look gorgeous and the sea salt is a brilliant touch!

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  7. They would be perfect for breakfast. Like the touch of sea salt, brings out the the chocolate in the muffins, perfect.

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  8. This flavor combo sounds divine!

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  9. I would love something chocolaty for breakfast :) These look so delicious ... beautiful clicks nik !! I 'm totally smitten by your photography !!

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    1. Thank you, Sowmya, you are very kind.

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  10. I could devour this for breakfast!! Do you ship? No, really :D

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    1. I would definitely ship you a batch!

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  11. Chocolate muffins are the BEST kind of muffins. Especially when you sprinkle salt on top!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Mallory, it is great to meet you!

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  12. Nik - these muffins sound GREAT! Love your combo of chocolate, coffee and sea salt!

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  13. I love the combo of coffee and chocolate and I agree that most muffins are too sweet. hard to find a recipe that is not, I love this recipe for multiple reasons, one it is not soo sweet two it has so many rich assortment of flour. I need to find brown rice flour, can i replace it with white?

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    1. Hi Simi, I think you can try white rice flour, just keep the weight the same.

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  14. What a fabulous breakfast treat that is slightly healthy to boot! Thanks for sharing!

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  15. healthy recipe--the salt is a nice addition!

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  16. Those sound wonderful–I'm sure they taste as great as they look!

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  17. That sounds like one gratifying chocolate muffin. I would love to try that hint of salt for my next batch of muffins.

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    1. You definitely should, you won't be disappointed.

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  18. You do muffins right! Too often they're overloaded with sugar - these look perfect. Great flavor, too. Thanks for this.

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    1. Thanks John! I love desserts but I like to control the sugar on my terms!

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  19. Wow, Nik. You've outdone yourself with these. They look amazing! I can taste and feel the crunch of the sea salt up against the warm, dark chocolate. Will make these ASAP.

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  20. i completely join you for the combo Coffee/chocolate, espacially when the chocolat is dark and bitter

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