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Coconut & Lemon Love

Posted Mar 21 2011 6:30pm
Spring is in the air. (Spring was in the air. At the time I wrote the main part of this post, anyway. Today, however, it snowed. And is supposed to all week.)

Just a vague glimpse of almost-t-shirt weather and sunny days and I’ve been nearly pickling my hands with lemon juice.

I love lemon poppyseed. Cookies. Muffins. Biscotti. Pancakes. Waffles. I don’t know what else can be lemon poppyseed, but I probably love it.

These lemon poppyseed muffins were brought about with help from some coconut oil sent to me by the kind folks at tropical traditions a couple weeks ago. (I know, I know. I’m a little tardy in saying so, but I needed time to play with it!)

I was shocked when I “unwrapped” this huge jar of oil, and right then I knew this company really takes pride in their products. The other product I have from them, the r aw honey , has become an almost daily part of my cooking and baking line-up, and I was excited to work their coconut oil into that as well.

I started slowly with it, having made the granola as well as roasted some sweet potatoes, but then I brainstormed lemon poppyseed muffins. Soon the coconut oil was involved, and soon after that my cashew flour was, too.

My kitchen sink almost found its way in there, but luckily I stopped shortly beforehand.

These muffins came out delightfully; lemony with a subtle kiss of coconut from the use of the oil, and the texture just right. I am thinking many of that thanks goes also to the coconut oil! They are not too sweet, with a bite of the lemon still coming through. And vaguely cashew-y.

What would have made them even better? Well, I don’t know for sure – since they’re wonderful as is, if you ask me – but I think they’d have been even better if I’d remembered to use the juice from the lemons.

Oh, yes, I did. Somehow, I forgot the lemon juice in my lemon poppyseed muffins.

As soon as I’d scooped the batter into the pans, popped ‘em in the oven and turned around; there were these two bright and shiny lemons, smiling back at me. Laughing, even.

I think the glorious smell of coconut oil and lemon zest distracted me too much, what can I say?

Oh, well. There’s always next time.


Spring-Is-Coming Lemon-Coconut Poppyseed Muffins

makes 7-9 muffins

While the ingredients list may look alarming initially, realize that you can most certainly use the flours on hand. 1/4 c. white whole wheat or unbleached all purpose flour can sub the 2 T. of coconut flour, and 1/2 c. of almond meal or white whole wheat can sub the cashew flour. You can also grind your own cashews into flour!

  • 1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 c. cashew flour
  • 2 T. coconut flour
  • 3/4 c. white whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 c. unrefined cane sugar
  • 1 T. baking powder
  • 2 T. poppy seeds
  • pinch of salt
  • 3/4 c. almond milk
  • 2 T. coconut oil , melted
  • 1/2 a ripe banana, mashed thoroughly
  • zest from two medium-large lemons
  • 1 t. vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 375*.

In a mixing bowl, combine flours, oats, sugar, baking powder, poppy seeds, salt and lemon zest. Pour in the milk, lemon juice, mashed banana and vanilla extract. Stir a couple times just to start to incorporate, and then add in the melted coconut oil. Stir until just combined.

Using an ice cream scoop, scoop the batter into greased or sprayed muffin tins.

Bake 10-15 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

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The coconut oil was an easy integration into this recipe and really lent a great flavor…and it made my kitchen smell phenomenal.

However, I’m still getting used to working with with the coconut oil. Since it is solid at room temperature, it needs to be melted first; but then comes the conundrum of adding it to a cold-ish batter, where the potential is there for it to solidify again. For the muffins I melted it and whisked it in last, but when I did the same for some lemon poppyseed cookies, the results were…less than stellar.

Very soft, flat cookies. My mom was not impressed. Whoops.

Other things I’ve done with it?

Roasted some sweet potatoes, diced apple, chickpeas and carrots in it and seasoned with some sage…

sweet potato and coconut granola…

…and I have a hunch there are many of you who have some more great recommendations for me!

I know there are many conflicting thoughts as to whether coconut oil is truly good for people, but I think that everything is okay in moderation, and believe that coconut oil does promote a healthy lifestyle when used in moderation, much like everything else! I am not one for labeling food good or bad, healthy or unhealthy. Even food that is commonly labeled “bad,” I prefer to see the brighter side of things, like what it does offer. There are interesting studies done on it at the very least!

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review in return for the free product. Do you use coconut oil a lot, or have you ever tried it? Do you have a favorite oil to cook with?

Do your tastebuds change with the seasons?

What screams Spring to you?

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