Real Fresh, Real Delicious: Harvest Muffins
Looking for the perfect homemade gift that is sure to make the season merry, bright, AND delicious? Try gifting scrumptious and moist muffins that are freezer friendly for a quick breakfast or a perfect pairing with a cup of coffee for chilly mornings. Muffins are the perfectly portable crowd-pleasing present.
 
Banana nut muffins are one of my favorite varieties, but for something a little extra special, try this recipe for Harvest Muffins that have a delicious and nutritious secret—they are sweetened with sweet potato instead of any added sugars! Sweet potato adds natural sweetness and extra nutrition in every bite. I hope you make a double batch for you and as a gift to a loved one this holiday season! Merry Christmas!!
 
Need more ideas? Give the gift of food with these five fun and easy suggestions featured last Christmas! 
 

Harvest Muffins

(Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen)

Several delicious looking muffins cooling on a rack
Bringing Baking Back: Make memories in the kitchen this holiday season with recipes, savings, and more! 
 
INGREDIENTS
    • 1¼ cups dried cranberries or cherries
    • ¾ cup pecans, toasted and chopped fine
    • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • ¾ cup apple cider
    • 2/3 cup buttermilk
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    • ¼ teaspoon grated orange zest
    • 2 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
    • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
    • 1½ teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
    • ½ teaspoon table salt
    • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
    • 1 ¼ cups peeled and shredded sweet potato (about 1 small potato)
Don't forget to check your weekly ad or the latest digital coupons for extra savings on the ingredients!
 
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 12-cup muffin tin with parchment liners or grease well. Finely chop ¼ cup cranberries and combine with ¼ cup toasted pecans. Set aside for topping.
  2. Melt butter in a 10-inch stainless skillet over medium-high heat until it begins to turn golden brown, about 2 minutes.Cook, stirring pan constantly until has a nutty aroma and is dark golden brown, another 1 minute or so.Set aside to cool slightly.
  3. Whisk apple cider, buttermilk, eggs, vanilla, and orange zest into the browned butter until smooth. In a separate large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, salt, and cloves together. Using rubber spatula, stir the butter mixture until combined.Fold in sweet potato and remaining 1 cup cranberries and remaining ½ cup pecans.
  4. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups and sprinkle with reserved topping mixture.Bake 18-20 minutes until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out with a few moist crumbs attached but no wet batter.Rotate muffin tin halfway through baking.
  5. Let muffins cool for 10 minutes before turning them out of muffin tin and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.Serve.
 
Visit your local Brookshire Brothers for all holiday needs! 
 

 
Angela Larson
Angela Larson is a registered dietitian (RD) who works with Brookshire Brothers promoting real fresh, real delicious foods and nutrition education to the community. She is also a clinical dietitian representing Woodland Heights Medical Center in Lufkin where she does outreach education on food and nutrition. Food is her passion, so Angela loves trying new recipes and exploring the more holistic side of nutrition. Angela loves to cook, garden, and spend time outdoors. In addition to the Brookshire Brothers blog, look for Angela's monthly articles in Charm East Texas. 
 
 
 
Give the Gift of Food: 5 Fun & Easy Ideas

Children Exchanging Gifts

‘Tis the season of giving… but that can add up pretty quickly if you’re shopping for friends, family, coworkers, cousins, neighbors, and more! Don’t stress. One gift that’s quick, easy, and cheap while still being thoughtfully creative is FOOD. Here’s a list of fun and simple ideas for edible gifts you can do without breaking the bank:

GO NUTS
Fill quart-sized mason jars with different types of nuts and dried fruits as a beautiful and nutritious gift of trail mix. Try alternating layers of shelled pistachios with dried cranberries for a festive red-green treat that is sure to satisfy.  Top with a piece of red or green construction paper, a piece of twine, and a gift tag to complete the presentation.

Find a nearby Brookshire Brothers to pick up any ingredients you don't already have on hand!

 ALL BARK AND TASTY BITES
Chocolate bark is one of the easiest confections, and you can go as far as the North Pole in terms of flavor combinations! Just melt your favorite baking chocolate according to the package instructions, spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, add mix-ins and toppings, and then refrigerate until hardened. One of my favorite colorful holiday combinations is white chocolate, crushed peppermints, and unsalted pistachios or pumpkin seeds. S’more bark is another fun take: chocolate + marshmallows + pieces of graham crackers + pecans = YUM.

EVERYONE LOVES BANANA BREAD
Banana Nut Bread is always a classic, plus it’s a great source of potassium and B vitamin! Check out my recipe for the best banana nut bread ever, which can easily be made into mini-loaves or muffins for easy distribution. Your friends and family will surely appreciate your loaves of love.

INFUSE OLIVE OIL WITH ROSEMARY
Olive oil is a unique gift with a bright shining halo of health in the world of nutrition. You can personalize the gift buy infusing it with rosemary. If time allows, you can easily personalize the gift by infusing the olive oil with rosemary. Dry whole sprigs of fresh rosemary by placing washed sprigs on a baking sheet. Put it in the oven for 2 - 4 hours on the lowest temperature setting. When the rosemary sprigs are brittle and have cooled, add to a bottle with your favorite extra virgin olive oil and allow it to infuse for a week or up to several months. Gift the oil for dipping with your favorite Brookshire Brothers artisan bakery bread. #BestNeighborEVER

For more on the health benefits of olive oil (as well as a recipe for an Easy Caprese Salad), read my ode here!

WARM UP WITH HOMEMADE SOUP
Share your Christmas spirit by the spoonful when you save your loved ones meal prep time with homemade soup! Fix your favorite wintertime soup, separate it into mason jars to distribute, and add a tag with freezing and re-heating instructions for a personal touch. This gift is delicious and easy to freeze if your friends/family want to save it for later. One of my favorites to share is winter squash soup—get the recipe here!

May your holidays be filled with delicious treats and special memories.  Merry Christmas!  

 

 
Angela Larson is a registered dietitian (RD) who works with Brookshire Brothers promoting real fresh, real delicious foods and nutrition education to the community. She is also a clinical dietitian representing Woodland Heights Medical Center in Lufkin where she does outreach education on food and nutrition. Food is her passion, so Angela loves trying new recipes and exploring the more holistic side of nutrition. Angela loves to cook, garden, and spend time outdoors. In addition to the Brookshire Brothers blog, look for Angela's monthly articles in Charm East Texas. 
 
 
Valentine Chocolate Covered Strawberries

You may have heard about, or even tasted, our famous Chocolate Covered Strawberries! 

These delicious berries will be the highlight of your Valentine's Day. Take the worry out of gift ideas and treat your sweetheart! Pick from 6 or 12 ct, and choose your choice of chocolate, white chocolate or mixed chocolate. You can pre-order yours today by printing the form below and returning to your local Bakery Department or Store Management. 

Click here to download your order form!

*Some varieties may not be available in all locations. See store for exclusions.