So I had an interesting conversation the other day. A writer from The Globe and Mail, a national Canadian newspaper, came across my blog when searching for information about American Girl Scout cookies. It seems that my blog post about Homemade Thin Mints caught his eye. In that post, I was lamenting the difference between the vast array of delicious Girl Scout Cookies and the boring sandwich cookies I had to peddle as a Canadian Girl Guide. Apparently, I am not the only one who feels this way. He decided to write a short piece on the matter after his wife and her friends were discussing the very same thing. So he wanted to interview me for the article as someone who has lived on both sides of the border and experienced both kinds of cookies. I suppose you could call me something of an expert.
It really was a revelation to move to the US and discover just how excited everyone got for Girl Scout cookie season. The Girl Guides of Canada only offer a single box of cookies that contain both vanilla and chocolate cream sandwich cookies. And as much as I love my homeland, I have to say that the cookies really aren’t very good. I don’t know anyone who gets very excited for cookie season in Canada…it’s more of an obligation to buy a few boxes from your neighbourhood Girl Guide than anything else. I can’t imagine that it’s all that successful a fund-raising scheme. Whereas here in the US, everyone has their favourite type of Girl Scout Cookie and I know people who buy boxes upon boxes and store them in the freezer, just to make them last throughout the year. Why such a huge difference between two parts of what is essentially the same organization? As my American-bred husband says, it’s just because the US does it better. And as much as I am fiercely loyal to Canada, in this case, I have to agree with him.
So what does any of this have to do with these muffins? It doesn’t at all, I just thought it was an interesting story and I wanted to tell you! I don’t know when the article is going to come out, but if you are in Canada and you come across fit, clip it out and send it to me. I’d love to see it.
As to the muffins, I saw something similar one day on A Culinary Journey with Chef Dennis. If you are not familiar with his blog, then you need to be. Dennis is truly a talented chef, and he is the king of Foodbuzz. He was the first person to ever comment on my blog that wasn’t a friend or a family member. He makes it a point to welcome everyone to the foodblogging community. He’s everywhere all at once and I can’t figure out how he maintains his full-time job and his blog too! The instant I saw his muffins, I wanted to make a low carb, gluten free version.
The Results: Serious yumminess. That’s the only way to describe this cross between a chocolate muffin and cheesecake. The muffin itself is nice and cakey, but not overly sweet. And then to have the creamy vanilla flavoured middle, it’s a great treat for breakfast. These ones were a hit with the whole family, including the picky little 2 year old. I turned my back on a half-eaten one the other morning, and came back to discover that she’d climbed up on the chair and finished it off for me. Oh well, at least I can say it’s good for her!
Oh, and my apologies that the recipe makes 14 muffins. Unfortunately, the cream cheese middle takes up a bit of room and I had too much muffin batter for 12!
Black and White Muffins
Cream Cheese Filling:
8 oz cream cheese
1/4 cup powdered erythritol
2 tbsp whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
16 drops stevia extract
2 cups almond flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup flax seed meal (or additional almond flour)
1/4 cup granulated erythritol
1/4 cup chocolate whey protein powder (can use plain as well)
2 tsp instant coffee (to boost chocolate flavour)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
6 oz Greek yogurt
2 large eggs
20 drops stevia extract
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup almond milk
Preheat oven to 325F and line 14 muffin tins with paper liners.
For the filling, beat cream cheese and powdered erythritol in a medium bowl until smooth. Beat in cream, vanilla extract and stevia extract until combined. Set aside.
For the muffins, whisk together almond flour, cocoa powder, flax seed meal, erythritol, protein powder, instant coffee, baking powder, baking soda, salt and xanthan gum in a medium bowl.
In a large bowl, beat yogurt until smooth. Beat in eggs and stevia until fully combined. Beat in almond flour mixture, along with butter and almond milk, until well mixed.
Divide batter among prepared muffin tins. Using the back of a spoon or your fingers, make a well in the center of each muffin. Divide cream cheese filling among muffins and smooth the top.
Bake 22 to 24 minutes or until both filling and muffin are set. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan.
Makes 14. Each muffin has a total of 7.6 g of carbs and 3.1 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 4.5 g.