The light came in through a window behind my back, over the sink and past the counter where my grandpa would make breakfast sausage in the mornings. Next to that was the fridge, decorated humbly with only a few cards. On the wall hung an off-white phone, it's cord long and tangled from use. The counters and the oven door were a faded tawny orange color, the wooden cabinets a deep mahogany, with golden stain--or at least that's how it is my memory. They're given no help from the rusty colored vinyl floors, which reflect an extra orange glow onto everything in the room.
I sit in a kitchen chair with metal legs and a faux leather cushion. My grandma has pulled my hair back into a pony tail but it's like you would expect from any toddler: the stray wisps are everywhere, escaping the elastic ponytail holder and doing their own thing. That's where time is frozen: I'm pouring fresh blueberries into a bowl of batter, while my grandpa snaps a picture. The mixing bowl, bigger than my head, is also orange. Daringly, I'm wearing no apron, just a floral dress with puffy, short sleeves (it is the '90s).
If it weren't for that picture, I wouldn't remember this day. Actually, I'm not sure if I do remember this day--my memories from being in this house are fleeting, single moments that fade and disappear before they really emerge. But because of this photo, I feel like I remember making those muffins. Not just those muffins, but many muffins. I feel like I remember preparing that same recipe every time I visited, setting my fate as a baker early.
Many years later (and many times in-between), I would go back to visit. Everything was as it had been: orange vinyl, white phone, that dated oven door. Most of the cards on the fridge were the same, only a few were added to the mix. This picture sat in a frame in the living room, amongst 20 or 30 others. My grandma told me that when my younger cousins found the photo, they asked her if they could also learn to make muffins. Instead she taught each of them a different recipe, leaving her legacy behind in the whisks and folds of homey pastries.
Yields: 6 | Total Time:
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/16 teaspoon of salt
- 2 tablespoon raw honey
- ½ cup canned coconut milk, full fat
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup fresh blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 2 scant tablespoons cassava flour
- 1/4 cup slivered almonds
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and fit a muffin pan with 6 muffin liners.
- Next, in a small bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: almond flour, cassava flour, salt, baking soda.
- In a separate medium-sized bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients: honey, coconut milk, vinegar, vanilla, melted coconut oil.
- When the wet ingredients are fully combined, add the dry ingredients to the wet 1/2 at a time, stirring in-between. A batter will form. Once no clumps remain, fold in the blueberries gently.
- Using two spoons, scoop the batter into muffin liners until they are about 5/6 of the way full. Top each muffin with a sprinkle of slivered almond and then bake for 25-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle. Set on cooling wrack to cool 10 minutes.