Purple Prairie Barley Muffins

by Laura on February 4, 2011

This beautiful violaceous heirloom grain caught my eye at the co-op yesterday, so I picked up a bag and decided to grind it into flour and turn it into a batch of muffins.  I think I was channeling my Honey Girl, because I improvised a baking recipe.  I took the lovely lavender flour and added some milk to it, soured with a tablespoon of white vinegar.  I added some neutral oil and some unsweetened applesauce for moisture and some white sugar for sweetness.  A little orange zest and grated nutmeg seemed like they might be happy partners in the mix, so I added them, too, plus a little baking soda and baking powder to make them rise.  Then I folded in whole wheat pastry flour, a present from my Honey Girl’s Mr. Right’s Southern mom, until the texture felt muffiny.  I scooped them into a tin, popped them into the oven, and baked them for 15 minutes.  Perfect!  They are moist and tender and quite nice. The flavor of the purple prairie barley is quite unlike anything I’ve had before, sweet and ever so slightly smoky.  I’m going to have one of these pretty lilac-flecked muffins for breakfast with a melting pat of Hope Creamery butter and a nice mug of tea.  I baked a dozen today and have batter left over.  I suspect it will keep in the refrigerator, such that you could bake off a few muffins for breakfast each morning for a few days.  Doesn’t that sound nice, emerging from the shower to a fresh-from-the-oven muffin?  I think I’ll try that tomorrow.  Eat one and sing a chorus of “Purple Grain.”

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kris Jacobson February 7, 2011 at 12:45 pm

what a beautiful color

2 Laura February 7, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Kris, I was thinking about you the whole time I was making them and about how you would love the color!

3 Tofu Mom (Marti) October 28, 2011 at 9:18 am

These are beautiful! I LOVE the purple barley but have only made savory risottos and soups, I’ll have to try this!

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