This month we have reached U, V, W. There are only a few vegetables, fruits or grains that begin with these letters so these are some of the hardest letters in the alphabet to find something to blog about.
I checked Veggie Ventures index, and she has nothing listed for U and V. For W there is only watercress and winter squash listed. I am not sure that I have ever seen watercress although I have read about cucumber and watercress sandwiches in books.
That left me with winter squash. Now technically that is a category of vegetable, not a specific vegetable, but since many winter squash varieties can be used interchangeably in recipes, I think winter squash is legal for the challenge.
I happened to have some leftover acorn squash in my fridge so went looking for something to make with it. When I measured it, I had right at a cup and decided to look at muffin recipes on the file in my computer.
Because I had maple flavor on my mind from yesterday’s Dessert Challenge, when I found a recipe for Maple Pumpkin Muffins that called for 1 cup of pumpkin, I knew I had found the base for my muffins.
I changed the pumpkins to squash, changed the spice from pumpkin pie spice to allspice and added some walnuts for crunch.
The muffins were moist and very good with a subtle maple flavor that paired very well with the squash flavor. Any mashed winter squash could be used in these. They would be a slightly different flavor for each one.
1 3/4 c. flour
1/2 c. brown sugar, firmly packed
1 T. baking powder
1 t. allspice
1/2 c. pure maple syrup
1/3 c. butter or margarine, melted
1 c. mashed cooked winter squash or pumpkin
1/3 c. chopped walnuts or other nuts
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder and allspice. Mix well. In a small mixing bowl, combine maple syrup, butter or margarine and the egg. Beat well. Add mashed squash and stir until well blended. Add liquid ingredients to flour mixture, stirring just until blended. Add nuts and mix briefly. Spoon batter into greased muffin cups, filling them about 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Let cool 5 minutes and remove from pan. May be served warm or at room temperature. Makes 12 muffins.
Brenda from Meal Planning Magic is planning to do this challenge next year which will be year three. Eating the Alphabet has been a great challenge which has helped me eat a bigger variety of vegetable, fruits and grains. If you would like to broaden your vegetable, fruit and grains horizon, I strongly suggest that you sign up and follow Meal Planning Magic to get all the details for 2014.
Check out the links below to see what other bloggers have done with the letters U, V, W.