A while ago I wrote a post called Se7en Tips About Low G.I. Diets… Living with a diabetic father person means that our diet in general has to be adapted to his. The easiest way for us to achieve a healthy diet for him and actually all of us was for us to switch to a Low G.I. diet. Low G.I. refers to foods that have a low glycemic index and are slower to release their glucose and leave your tummy feeling fuller longer. If you want to know more about Low G.I. eating then have a look at the G.I. Foundation Website, which lists links, books, and a food list for you.
Since I wrote the post on Low G.I. tips I have not posted a single Low G.I. recipe. Needless to say I thought I would give you one and show how to turn regular muffins into Low G.I. muffins.
When you look at Low G.I. recipe books the number of ingredients for a recipe can be quite overwhelming. So I had a look at what made a recipe Low G.I. and which ingredients would make it so, once I had grasped the concept I understood what the ingredients were there for and what they were replacing it was far easier not be totally overwhelmed! (If you are looking for more ingredients to replace for Low G.I. ones then have a look in the cookbooks by Gabi Steenkamp, here is a link to her website).
This is a look at the ingredients and replacements used in this muffin recipe:
- Oat Bran: Can be used to lower the G.I. of any baked item and can replace up to two thirds of the regular cake flour you use. But since oat bran doesn’t contain the gluten of flour you have to manually add the raising agent to your recipe and in this case we add baking powder and Bicarbonate of Soda.
- Digestive Bran: This doesn’t lower the G.I. of a recipe but it does add a whole lot more fiber to the recipe and mops up any extra liquid in the recipe.
- Skim or Fat Free Milk: Milk lowers the G.I. of a recipe but it is a waste of flavor to use your fat in the milk when their are more flavorful ways to add flavor to a recipe.
- Low Fat Yogurt: Yogurt is extremely Low G.I. as it is very effective at lowering the absorption of glucose in the bloodstream. I used vanilla flavored yogurt as it adds to the flavor of the muffin without significantly increasing the sugar content of the recipe.
- Sugar: By keeping the amount of sugar to less than 10g per serving you are keeping the G.I. Low while adding a lot of flavor. In South Africa it makes no difference wether you use white or brown sugar as all our sugar is refined white sugar with molasses added to make our brown sugar look brown!
- Whole-wheat Pronutro: This is a South African breakfast cereal (only the apple and original flavors are Low G.I.) that slows down the absorption of glucose from flour and so lowers the G.I. of the final product. If you don’t have pronutro then you can replace it with: 1/2 cup of digestive bran and 1/2 cup soya flour for every 1 cup of pronutro.
- Oils: Most baked recipes call for butter as the fat, but that is rich in saturated fat so Low G.I. recipe’s usually opt for a nut or seed oil (olive oil is not a good oil for sweet bakes, but excellent for savories). Oils are easy to use in batter type mixtures in smaller portions than are required from butter.
Let’s get on with the recipe and meet the players:
I did say these recipes have a lot of ingredients (!) and I separated them into wet and dry ingredients.
- 4 eggs
- 250 ml (1 cup) castor sugar
- 30 ml (6 tsp) canola oil
- 10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla essence
- 250 ml (1 cup) skim or fat-free milk
- 500 ml (2 cup) low fat vanilla yogurt
- 250 ml (1 cup) digestive bran
- 500 ml (2 cups) oat bran
- 250 ml (1 cup) whole-wheat pronutro
- 500 ml (2 cups) cake flour
- 20 ml (4 tsp) baking powder
- 10 ml (2 tsp) bicarbonate of soda.
- 2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) salt
This recipe makes an enormous number of muffins – but they freeze really well apparently… if you happen to have se7en kids don’t worry – you have finally found a recipe that conquers!
Let’s Play the Game:
Step 1: I tried to make the measuring for this recipe easy by just using 2 cups, 1 cup or 1/2 a cup, and a multiple of teaspoons… so get those ready and you are good to go.
First put the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl, measuring as you go. (Keep the sugar aside we will put that with the wet ingredients). You will need all the help you can get:
They may not observe forever:
Step 2: Moving on to the wet ingredients: Beat the eggs until they are fluffy and light and then gradually add the castor sugar in. All the while beating – until it is fluffy and creamy.
Then add the remaining wet ingredients measuring as you go.
Step 3: Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and as with most muffins you don’t want to mix too much – just until everything is mixed together.
Step 4: Now I thought we could look at some varieties of muffin… and of course there are a million different types – we just made se7en… you will have to adapt the amount of “add-ins” you need to the amount of mixture… I am always generous with amounts I add in and if it looks too much I set the extra’s aside for eager helpers to snack on while the muffins bake.
- Dried cranberries: Any dried berries or frozen berries work for this one. Chop them and toss them into your mixture.
- Chocolate: (If you use 85% chocolate you will not be increasing the sugar in the recipe significantly and the fat content over the spread of muffins will not be significant either) I thought `i had a slab in the cupboard, turned out to be a mini-slab… and turned out some-one had been there before me! Anyway chunk your chocolate and stir it in.
- Apples and Cinnamon: Chop your apples into small chunks sprinkle with ground cinnamon and add to your mixture.
- Banana and Apple: Chop your banana into small chunks (or you can mash it) and grate the apple and add it to the mixture.
- Carrot and Orange: Grate a couple of carrots and use the zest of an orange as well as a squeeze of the orange juice for flavor. Add these to the mixture.
- Spinach and Feta: Chop some spinach leaves and crumble some feta cheese into them and mix them into the muffin mixture.
- Pepperdews, Parmisan and Herbs: Slice the pepperdews, grate the parmisan and sprinkle the herbs into the mixture.
Step 5: Now paper muffin cases are your friends at this stage. Line your muffin tins with them, fill each of them with mixture and get baking!
Step 6: Pop your muffins into a medium to hot oven 200 degrees Celsius (400 degrees Fahrenheit) for 10 to 15 minutes. When a skewer comes out clean or they are lightly brown on top they are done.
Step 7: Have yourself a marvelous munch on a million muffins!