Sunday, June 26, 2016

Sweet Potato Muffins & Ice Cream (vegan)

reading time: 4 min





I have a confession to make. Something that I've had on my mind for a while now. Lately there seem to be a lot of videos on youtube discussing if vegans could be in a relationship with non-vegans or not. And it makes me insecure sometimes.  

In a way, I find it ridiculous. The question alone sounds kind of like racism to me - why shouldn't vegans be with non-vegans?!?! -, but then there are times when I catch myself wishing my boyfriend was vegan. I know, I shouldn't think that - he's extremely supportive of me and my lifestyle, he loves to cook and eat vegan with me, and that's all that matters. But the thing is, for me veganism is more than just eating non-dairy, non-meat products. It's also about the abuse of animals, the slavery, the rape, the violence and injustice behind that piece of meat or cheese. My boyfriend knows about these circumstances of course, and he's generally concerned about health and buying organic good, but i'm not sure if he makes the connection between the slaughter and torture of animals and the pleasure of non-vegan food. And as much as I love my boyfriend and as much as I want to respect his own lifestyle, it can be hard sometimes to see him eat these things without caring about the pain and cruelty behind his food. I don't want to be bothered by that, but sometimes I am. And I feel bad about it.

What are your thoughts?!

>> But on to the recipe now: I had some leftover cooked sweet potatoes sitting in the fridge, and randomly started google-ing easy sweet potato recipes that I could make for lunch. During that process I stumbled upon the divine looking Sweet Potato Cinnamon Muffin recipe by Brandi from The Vegan 8, and I decided to modify it to my needs/pantry supply. But since I didn't have any coconut milk at hand and I didn't want to eat plain muffins, I paired mine with a scoop of home made Sweet Potato ice cream (recipe below), soooo good.


SWEET POTATO "SPECULOOS" MUFFINS

adapted from Brandi @TheVegan8 

Preparation time: 35 mins
Main ingredients: sweet potato, flour, cinnamon
difficulty level: easy
makes: 12 muffins
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, nut-free, low-fat

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups spelt flour (or any other type of flour, such as nut flour)
1/2 cup corn starch
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup coconut sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup cooked sweet potato
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup soy milk

Instructions

Preheat your oven to 350°F / 180°C.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients except for the vanilla: flour, starch, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and coconut sugar. In a small bowl, peel and mash your cooked sweet potato, so no lumps remain. Add the vanilla and soy milk and stir really well.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir with a whisk until evenly mixed. The batter should be similar to the consistency of cake batter, not thin, but not as thick as traditional muffin batter.

Divide the batter between about 12 muffin liners - if you use soy milk (instead of coconut milk, as the original recipe suggests), I would recommend either greasing the muffin tin or using silicon liners to avoid the muffins to stick to the parchment liners.
 

Bake for 20 - 25 minutes - when a toothpick comes out without wet batter sticking to it, they are done. When the muffins come out, they will still be slightly undercooked, but will finish cooking over the next 20 minutes. So, do NOT eat them until they have cooled at least 20 minutes. 

While the muffins are baking and cooling down, prepare your frosting!

The muffins are best eaten within 24 hours, as the starch will cause them to start to dry out after a couple of days. Store in the fridge.


These muffins are pillowy soft, light and moist and have a wonderful cinnamon flavour that is complimented by the natural sweetness of sweet potatoes and coconut sugar. My supervisor at the internship (that has ended now) thought they tasted like speculoos, and she couldn't believe that the main ingredient was sweet potato!! Score! She actually suggested me to start a delivery service for vegan cupcakes, muffins, brownies etc. hehe :)

For the frosting - or rather: topping - of the muffins, i went two ways:
(1) Sweet Potato ice cream (recipe below)
(2) Sweet Potato caramel (recipe)
Personally, i loved both, but as i didn't have any coconut milk and used soy milk instead, like i  mentioned, my caramel didn't turn out like it was supposed to, and it was more like a sticky paste than a sauce - but still dang delicious nonetheless :)


SWEET POTATO ICE CREAM

Preparation time: 5 mins
Main ingredients: sweet potato, banana
difficulty level: easy
serves: 1
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free, paleo, low fat

Ingredients

2 ripe bananas, frozen
1/2 cup cooked mashed sweet potato, frozen (non-frozen works too!)
Splash of soy milk or soy yoghurt

 

Instructions

This recipe is similar to my Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream, which actually tastes kind of similar in the way that both sweet potato and Hokkaido pumpkin are exceptionally sweet and lovely starches :) 

Anyway: Break your pre-frozen bananas and sweet potato purée into pieces and place in a food processor or blender. (If your sweet potato isn't frozen, mash it well and throw it in there either way - you will just have to leave it a bit longer in the freezer afterwards). To help the blender, add a splash of soy milk or yoghurt (unless you're using non-frozen sweet potato which will be soft enough already).

Blend until smooth and creamy. If your bananas were ripe when you froze them, this ice cream really doesn't require any additional sweetener. Transfer to a freezable container and freeze for about half an hour, while the muffins are cooling down.

Note to self: If I ever come across some purple sweet potato in another country, I will bring a bunch of them to Germany and make purple sweet potato ice cream!!

When both the muffins and the ice cream are cold enough, scoop some of the ice cream on top of the muffins and enjoy! Also: adding some of that sweet potato caramel ON TOP of the ice cream should be HEAVEN.

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I actually wanted to link other "healthy-fied" muffins, but was shocked to realise that I had only ONE muffin recipe on my blog so far! That needs to change! :)




Maisy



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