A Brew to A Kill:
A Coffeehouse Mystery
Cover art for the paperback
edition, releasing Aug. 2013
As the story opens, Greenwich Village coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi not only attempts to expand her business with a coffee and muffin truck, she also hires a sweet-natured dietitian to help lighten some of the higher calorie items on her menu.
When Lilly is brutally struck by a hit-and-run driver, Clare’s outrage propels her into tracking down the culprit; and once again, Clare is sleuthing her way into and out of trouble.
For today's recipe, I attempted to channel Lilly and duplicate one of her menu makeovers. May you eat it with joy--and in good health!
Chocolate Ricotta Muffins
With a mocha variation
A few quick notes...
The star of today's recipe is, of course, the ricotta cheese, which brings creamy moistness to these muffins along with protein and nutrition.
|(I use Carrington Farms|
extra virgin coconut oil.
It's economical, good quality
coconut oil, easy to find online
and it's also carried by Costco.)
Natural cocoa powder adds flavor but also structure to the muffins, which allowed me to reduce the amount of refined white flour in the recipe. To make these muffins even healthier, you can swap in “white whole wheat” flour instead of all-purpose, which brings more dietary fiber to your snack table. Finally, gluten-free flour is always an option for those who need it.
Makes 6 large muffins or 8 small
1 large egg
½ cup ricotta (whole or part-skim)
½ cup light buttermilk (shake before measuring)
3 Tablespoons oil (canola, vegetable, or extra virgin coconut)
¼ cup granulated white sugar
¼ cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup + 1 Tablespoon natural, unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 pinches of table salt
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup + 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
Variation: For Mocha Muffins, add 1-1/2 teaspoons instant espresso where indicated in Step 1. Instant espresso is freeze-dried espresso and not ground espresso roast beans. I use this brand (Medaglia D’oro), but you can certainly use any you like.
Step 2 – Spray the papers: Line muffin cups with paper holders and spray the papers with non-stick spray. This is a low-fat recipe, so if you do not spray the papers, the muffins will stick.
Step 3 – Bake: This recipe makes about 1-3/4 cups of muffin batter. You can make six large muffins or eight small ones. Divide the batter among your muffin cups. Bake in a well-preheated oven at 375° F. for about 20 minutes, depending on your oven. Do not over-bake. Muffins are done when a toothpick inserted into a test muffin comes out clean (with no batter clinging to it).
TIP: Muffins will be fragile when they first come out of the hot oven. Allow them to cool in the pan for about ten minutes and transfer to a rack. If muffin edges are sticking to the paper, simply allow them to cool a bit more.
Optional frosting: If you like, finish cooled muffins with a dollop of my Chocolate “Buttercream” Frosting (without butter or cream). What is the mystery ingredient in this "healthified" chocolate frosting? (Followers of this blog already know. :))
Get my healthier chocolate frosting recipe by clicking the link above or clicking here.
F o o d i e
P h o t o s
Yes, this is me, Cleo (aka Alice).
Friend me on facebook here.
Follow me on twitter here.
Visit my online coffeehouse here.
|To view the|
book trailer, click here.