Featured Ingredient: Wheat Germ
Wheat germ is what I like to consider one of the great stealth health foods. You see, grains like wheat are composed of three parts: endosperm, bran and germ. The endosperm is mostly just starch and what is left when grains are refined and why items like white bread and white rice are far from nutritional bell ringers. The bran is rich in fiber hence its association with keeping you, well, regular. As for the germ, this is where the lion share of the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants contained within a whole grain are found. This means the isolated wheat germ you can buy at the store is an impressive source of nutrients such as B vitamins, selenium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc. It is also a surprising source of protein.
There are plenty of ways to sneak some into your diet including in oatmeal, smoothies, coatings for meats, and of course baked goods. Case in point: these wheat germ infused breakfast cakes are a nutritionally charged way to start the day. Kind of like a bowl of oatmeal in muffin form.
I like that I can just blitz all the ingredients in the blender and pour the batter straight into muffin cups. The cakes themselves are not sweetened because I top them with this richly flavored apple chutney. We have an abundance of wild apple trees in our area that are packed with fruit this season so I’m enjoying working apples into all sorts of recipes. I used a jumbo sized muffin tin for this recipe to give the cakes a more substantial presentation but you could also use the regular sized muffin cups. But if you do, be sure to reduce the baking time a few minutes.
The wheat germ that I made the cakes with was Kretschmer Wheat Germ. They have been bottling up the flaky stuff for a long time and still have the best product out there. It’s worthwhile checking out their website for a bunch of recipe ideas using wheat germ.
Now for the important stuff. It’s time for another Muffin Tin Mania giveaway? The fine folks at Kretschmer would like to award one of my readers with some of their wheat germ to try out. To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment on this blog post that says “I Brake for Germs” along with some way of identifying yourself such as your initials, name or email address and I will use this online tool to randomly select a winner. I’ll announce the winner Thursday September 19th, so if you entered write the date down on your calendar and check back in then for a chance to claim your prize.
Oat Wheat Germ Breakfast Cakes with Apple Chutney
3 large eggs
3/4 cup low-fat milk or non-dairy alternative
1 1/2 cups oat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup melted unsalted butter, melted coconut oil or other oil of choice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
4 medium sized apples, finely chopped
1/3 cup dried currants
¼ cup maple syrup
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place all of the pancake ingredients in a blender or food processor container and blend until smooth. Stir in walnuts.
Divide matter among 6 jumbo sized greased or paper lined muffin cups. Bake until set and lightly browned on top, about 20 minutes. Let cool several minutes before unmolding.
To make the chutney, place all of the chutney ingredients in a medium sized saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat until apples are very soft, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes.
Serve pancake muffins with chutney. Both should be warm.