Have you tried millet?
I don't play favorites often, but if you asked me what my favorite grain was, I'd probably choose this one. I adore its light, fluffy texture. The husband and I like to toast it in a bit of butter in a saucepan for a rich and nutty flavor before we add water to cook it. As a whole grain, millet is a good source of some important nutrients like magnesium, phosphorus, and manganese.
I know what you may be thinking. Is this the same stuff we used to make homemade birdseed with in 2nd grade? With peanut butter on a cone and stuff? Well yes, but before you get any complexes about eating "bird food", let me convince you of how delicious it is by putting it in a muffin. Because everything tastes better in a muffin, right?
Yesterday, I had a real hankering for these muffins. I had all the ingredients I needed...except a lemon. Nobody wants to drive all the way to the store for just one lemon, so I stepped back into the 1950s for a minute and asked my next-door neighbor if she had any lemons. (Although, I modernized it a bit by texting her rather than calling.)
My efforts paid off because she had a lemon! Some of the zest was zested off, but it would do. When I went over to get said lemon, I was also gifted with two fantastic finger paintings from her 3-year old daughter, which are now proudly displayed on my fridge. Major bonus.
So now my millet muffins have a bit of a story, and I like that. These muffins are light, fresh, and simple to make. I love the bright tones from the lemon and slight crunch you get with each bite from the millet. In exchange for the lemon and finger paintings, I headed straight back to the neighbors' house and handed over three of these muffins, hot from the oven. They seemed to think it was a pretty good exchange.
millet muffins with lemon + yogurt // makes 12 muffins
adapted from "Super Natural Every Day" by Heidi Swanson
2 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup millet
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
1 cup plain yogurt (I like full-fat for baking, but use whatever you like)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup unsalted butter, barely melted in a saucepan over low heat and cooled slightly
1/2 cup honey
grated zest and 2 tablespoons juice from 1 lemon
brown sugar, for sprinkling (optional)
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter a standard 12-cup muffin pan. Whisk together the flour, millet, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, eggs, butter, honey, and lemon zest and juice until smooth. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until the flour is just incorporated. Divide the batter among the muffin cups, filling them a bit below the rim. Sprinkle each with a small bit of brown sugar, if desired. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the muffin tops are browned and just beginning to crack. Let cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then turn the muffins out of the pan to cool completely on a wire rack. (Or eat one hot out of the oven, like I did.)