Friday, October 7, 2011

5 observations and chocolate muffins

the road ahead

  1. I love reading to my kids.  Sometimes I'm lazy and slow to get there but it's the best.  We are finishing The BFG and are going to start the The Graveyard Book next.  We started The Graveyard Book once before but the opening scene is so scary we stopped.  My younger daughter loves stories about ghosts so we're planning to try again (maybe we'll skip/skim the murder scene).
  2. This is probably the last time I'll have to drill the multiplication tables.  My youngest is on the threes this week (why is 3x9 so particularly hard?).  I don't really enjoy math flash cards, but this is it so I should enjoy it (or something).
  3. My almost twelve year old cannot seem to get enough sleep.  It's freaky how tired she is (I keep getting paranoid that she's sick).  I read somewhere once that adolescents actually need more sleep (contrary to their love of staying up late) because of growth and hormones and I can totally see that.
  4. My cats do love me after all.  I was lamenting the other day how little my cats like to be held and snoodled, but then I noticed that they're always around.  They seem to like to like to  hang around me (laundry, bathroom, kitchen, wherever), they just don't like to be touched very much.
  5. Laura Marling is totally impressive (can you believe that she is just 21?).  I like her new album and have really enjoyed hearing her interviewed lately.  But this song from her last album is still my favourite:

This week's recipe is for chocolate muffins.  This is what my kids request when they want something fresh-baked.  I oblige them because this is so simple and fast and I usually have all the ingredients on hand.  I sometimes do half quinoa flour to improve it nutritionally.  My kids could do this recipe on their own and next time I'll likely let them.  Also, even though it's not a huge recipe, there's always left-overs for the lunch boxes.

Chocolate Muffins
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (save 1/4 cup for sprinkling)
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 400°.  Line 12 muffin cups with papers.

Put the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa, sugar (sift, if your kitchen is as humid as mine), and 3/4 cup of the chocolate chips into a large bowl. Mix all the liquid ingredients into another bowl. Mix the dry and wet ingredients together.  Don't overmix. Spoon into the prepared muffin pan. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top and then bake for 20 minutes or until the muffins are springy.


  1. My kids always used the finger trick for multiplying by 9s.

  2. Thanks Tricia! that's a great tip. I'd never seen that before.