Timtana Montana orange muffins. Made by Hannah Montana’s gluten-free sister. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)
Bear with me while I indulge in a little preamble ramble. I grew up in Colorado, but I’ve spent a lot of time wandering around the big sky state of Montana. My family had property on Whitefish Lake and in Paradise Valley. I’ve explored the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness and had a show-down with a grizzly bear on my mountain bike in the Gallatin Range. Actually, he/she just gave me a bored look and ambled off, but still. I’ve camped on the Madison and Yellowstone Rivers, played in Flathead Lake, have ridden my bike over Logan Pass in Glacier National Park and have been serenaded late into the night by Dennis Quaid at Chico Hot Springs. Okay, so he was three sheets to the wind and wasn’t sure who he was serenading, but it was an interesting evening nonetheless (long story). My son went to the University of Montana, studied wildlife biology and is a part-time fly-fishing guide. My last name is McLean (without the “a”), as in “A River Runs Through It.”
I love Montana and its people. Those of you who’ve been following this blog know how I feel about my local farmers. I’m totally smitten with Andy Grant and the folks at Grant Family Farms in northern Colorado and feel a similar appreciation for my farmer and plant scientist friends in Montana.
Stick with me – there is a point to this post.
You may not know it, but some of the best gluten-free product development in the world is taking place in this laid-back, yet lively state. Belgrade, a small town nestled in the Gallatin Valley, is easy access to Bozeman, Yellowstone National Park, Big Sky Resort, Bridger Bowl Ski Area and gluten-free food. This is my kind of place – rugged mountains, spring creeks, raging rivers, spacious valleys and hearty food. Seriously, what more could you ask for?
The Montana Gluten Free Processors make up a group of interesting characters (my favorite kind – quirky and off-beat) committed to nutritious, premium-quality, gluten-free food that also tastes good. They promote sustainable agriculture and have a dedicated gluten-free, state-of-the-art processing and packaging facility located in the foothills of the Bridger Mountains at the headwaters of the Missouri River. I’ve been experimenting with their products for a couple of years now and have found the hearty flavor and texture of the flours perfect for my kind of baking. As a nutritionist, I’m picky about what I eat and I’m not going to waste my calories on gluten-free flours that look like ground styrofoam, make squeaky sounds when you play with them and are devoid of nutrients. If I’m going to eat baked treats, I want them to be healthy.
Timtana is a great option for gluten-free baking. It has a wholesome, slightly sweet, nutty flavor. The color is rich, warm and sumptuous and it’s loaded with fiber and good quality protein.
Can you call a flour lusty?
If so, Timtana qualifies.
Timtana orange marmalade muffins
what you need
1 & 1/4 cup Timtana flour
3/4 cup garbanzo/fava bean flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup Earth Balance, softened
1/4 cup raw cane sugar (I used demerara style, but brown sugar would work fine)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1 & 1/2 cup orange marmalade *
1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon rice milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
what you do
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, soda, salt, xanthan gum and cinnamon and set aside. In a small bowl, combine rice milk and apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
2. Cream Earth Balance, gradually add sugar and mix well. Add vanilla and eggs. Add orange marmalade, mix on low until all ingredients are well blended.
3. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, alternating with the rice milk/vinegar mixture.
4. Gently blend in pecans.
5. Spoon into paper lined muffin cups 2/3rds full and bake in pre-heated 350 degree oven for 20 to 24 minutes (depending on your oven). To insure even cooking, rotate the pans 180 degrees half-way through baking time. Store in the refrigerator.
* I used St. Dalfour Orange Marmalade, which is 100% fruit and sweetened with grape juice concentrate.
Makes 18 gorgeous, lusty, wild-west muffins.