This year, I have decided to make choices that are relatively healthy (like the beginning of every other year, so good luck me). In the spirit of toned abs and sculpted arms, I am going to post more recipes that amount to fewer calories; don’t get me wrong, I still believe butter makes everything better, but no harm in giving margarine or canola oil a shot if it means that the taste remains as good, right?
Making desserts healthy is not easy. You can’t just about replace all-purpose flour with whole wheat or olive oil instead of butter and believe me, there’s no substitute for sugar that will make your hands reach out for more. Every cake you make, deserves the moistness from butter and the sweetness from sugar. Tampering with these ingredients would mean that you are compensating on the taste of the final product.
The good news, however, lies in a simple fact – while you can’t expect a tofu cake to taste like cheesecake, you can expect a cake containing only healthy ingredients (like it’s meant to be) to taste fantastic. Take the scrummy carrot cake for instance, which gets all its moistness from vegetable oil, Nigella’s chocolate olive oil cake or these utterly delicious whole wheat, oatmeal banana muffins – they will all be fed by the hungry albeit diet conscious souls very, very well.
I don’t mean to sound like a nutritionist, but here are my two cents to those of you who want to have your cake and eat it too – don’t go looking for sweet and lows or other sugar substitutes for your cakes, just pick a healthier alternative, perhaps light brown sugar instead of white sugar? And on days you want to have a heavenly sliver of creamy cheesecake, just mentally prepare yourselves to run the extra mile, and never guilt.
- 130 g whole-wheat flour (1 cup)
- 42 g porridge oats (1/2 cup)
- 80 g light brown sugar (1/4 cup)
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 50 g walnuts, chopped
- 3 large ripe bananas, mashed
- 4 tbsp runny honey
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil (neutral flavour)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Makes 12 muffins
- Preheat the oven to 180 C. Line a 12-count muffin pan with wrappers.
- In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Mix well and set aside.
- In another bowl, mix all the wet ingredients.
- Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Fold until combined.
- Pour the muffin batter into the prepared tin and bake for 20 minutes.