Morning Ritual

The morning cup of coffee has an
exhilaration about it which the
cheering influence of the after-
noon or evening cup of tea
cannot be expected
to reproduce.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes~

I’ve had this Pavoni cappuccino machine for 25 years and I can’t begin to count how many morning lattes it has provided me.  It has been packed and moved from city to city with me and I depend on it to make a delicious cup of coffee, which is an essential part of my morning ritual.  It doesn’t disappoint.

I’m a morning person, but I don’t wake up all chirpy and hit the floor running.  More often than not I am awakened by a tiny wet tongue on my cheek, or a paw on my shoulder or in my face – Hannah letting me know it’s time to get up.  We have a little cuddle, which Bella often joins in on, and then we head downstairs to tun on the Pavoni.  I like to ease into the day slowly and look forward to that morning cup of coffee, which I linger over while doing things that energize me.  Rushing in the morning does not work for me.  On most days I finish my coffee before I even think about breakfast, but there is one thing I like to eat along with my coffee, a Grapenuts muffin.  I have been making these muffins for as many years as I’ve had my trusted Pavoni.  I don’t recall where I found the original recipe, but what I do remember is that it was touted as a muffin you could throw together if you didn’t have any eggs in the refrigerator.  I have altered the original recipe quite a bit since that first batch years ago, and here’s my version.  If you are looking for a light and airy muffin this is not the recipe for you, but if you want something dense and hearty this could be it!  These muffins freeze well and can be enjoyed 10 minutes after being taken from the freezer – just slice in half, put in a toaster oven at 350 degrees for about 8 minutes and enjoy with your coffee.

Grapenuts Muffins

1 1/2 cups flour
2 cups Grapenuts Cereal*
1 T. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 cup sugar (scant cup)
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 T. vanilla
1 cup nuts, coarsely chopped (pecans are my favorite)
3/4 cup dates, or other dried fruit (dates are my favorite)

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, mix well.  Add nuts and dates.  Mix wet ingredients together, stir into dry mixture.  Spoon into muffin pan that has been oiled or lined with paper baking cups.  Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes.

*Don’t try this recipe with the Grapenuts sold in Canada.

Enjoy your day!  Eat well!

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4 Responses to Morning Ritual

  1. Betsy says:

    I always thought you invented that recipe … didn’t you?

  2. suellen1234 says:

    I guess you could say I created the recipe because it bears little resemblance to the original one, but the idea for them came from a cookbook somewhere??? When I worked in the test kitchen for American Home Foods, I vaguely remember there was a certain amount of things you had to change in a recipe before you could call it your own. I think I can safely call it my recipe because I changed a LOT of things.

  3. Your photos are fabulous. I can taste those muffins, and better still, i will make them! Really and truly, you have found the food photographer in you as well as the spiritualist, the artist, the cook, the writer……and on and on and on! High five!

  4. suellen1234 says:

    I do like taking photos of food, a new part of cooking, although it’s time-consuming, so often can’t be part of the plan. Thanks for the feedback. I remember making those muffins once in your kitchen many moons ago. When do we get another installment of your blog?

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