I have a pretty extensive collection of cookbooks from Minnesota churches and nursing homes. These are the cookbooks I turn to whenever I need a recipe for the simple comfort foods I remember from my childhood. On the whole, these cookbooks contain a whole lot of the following:
– Hot dishes
– Bread (as in zucchini or banana)
– Salads that contain no greens but are likely to have either cool whip or mayo
Most of the recipes can be made out of pantry staples with a focus on easy prep, used in a time when low-calorie and reduced-fat were not part of the vernacular. A bonus to these cookbooks is that they are usually loaded with bits of advice for the homemaker, like this gem:
In flipping through the Luther Memorial Memorable Meals cookbook (pub. 1982), I found a recipe for Strawberry Jam Bread submitted by Cindy Mack. I decided to give it a try. As usual, I made a few changes – less fat, less sugar, turned the bread into muffins, and added diced apples to boost moisture and give it some texture. I’m not sure if Cindy would approve of the changes, but I like to think that she would be glad I used her idea to feed my family.
Also recommended – play Pump Up the Jam by Technotronic while eating these muffins. It really sped up breakfast. Hard to say if this was due to the influence of the peppy beat, or in an attempt to get out of the kitchen quickly to avoid watching me move and groove.
1 apple, peeled and diced
2 T. non-dairy margarine
1/4 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
1 c. flour
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. cream of tartar
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 c. non-dairy sour cream
1/4 c. strawberry jam
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place liners in muffin pan and coat with cooking spray.
Place apple bits into a microwave safe container and microwave on high for 2 minutes. Set aside until cool, or rinse with cold water and drain. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together margarine and sugar. Add egg and vanilla, mix until combined. Add flour, salt, cream of tartar, and baking soda, and mix until well combined. Add reserved apple bits, non-dairy sour cream, and jam. Mix until blended. Spoon into paper liners, dividing evenly.
Bake for 18-20 minutes until slightly golden or a toothpick comes out clean. Place on rack to cool.
Estimated calories: 125 cal/serving
Print it: Pump Up the Jam Muffins
– Feel free to substitute dairy ingredients for the non-dairy counterparts used here – butter or margarine and regular sour cream would be fine in this recipe
– Any sort of jam or jelly would work in this recipe, use whatever you have or like
– These muffins are a bit on the pale side. I don’t really care, but the original recipe countered this part by adding red food coloring. I skipped it, but experiment with it if you’d like.