Trying to shrink

I hope you aren’t getting tired of muffins. Obviously, I’m not. Today’s post is masquerading as yet another muffin post, but it’s really about something else entirely. Something very personal. If you have been a very long time reader of mine, you will remember the year that I was serious about Weight Watchers and I lost forty two pounds. Several months ago, I just let it all go. It happened the way this sort of thing happens to people. I had a routine and it centered around work. I ate certain things at certain times of the day and walked during my breaks and then sometimes, made it to the gym on top of that. I had a really good routine that I hardly had to think about. The weight loss came easy. When I lost my job, I lost my routine, I got really depressed, things started to slip and a whole host of bad habits came back. Then I stopped trying altogether. I have gained back seventeen pounds.

Now, I know your first instinct is to be supportive and tell me that seventeen pounds isn’t even half of what I lost and I’m still okay. The problem is that I was going through all of this effort for my health. I don’t want to get diabetes, go blind, trip and break my hip, trip again and break my other hip and suffer the way my mother has. I don’t want to clog my arteries, suffer for years with angina and then have a quadruple bypass like my dad. I know I don’t want any of that, but I suffer from human nature and I am my parents daughter and I have ingrained poor habits that I have to concentrate very hard on changing every day. My dad said something last week that sums up what I need to strive for. He basically said that everyone gets old and everyone will die, but you want to do whatever you can to have the best quality of life until the end. Well said. Something I need to concentrate on very hard. Something that seeing my mom laying in her hospital bed so fragile and unhappy drives home for me.

One problem I have that I think everyone struggles with is portion control. I have a bad habit of having more than one of something I like and taking too much of it to begin with. In order to shrink me, I’ll need to shrink my portions so that’s what I did this week. I did a knock-off of the delicious strawberry muffins from last time but I made sure I made them in mini muffin tins. Here is the Mimi math for you. Each mini muffin is one half the size of a regular muffin. If I ate a regular muffin and then lost control and had to have a second muffin, it would equal four mini muffins. So, if I have a mini muffin and have a second, it equals one regular muffin. If I go really crazy and have three, it is equal to one and a half regular muffins, I am still ahead half a muffin. Terrible logic, I’m sure, but these are the little tricks that helped me lose the weight last time.

Sourdough apple walnut mini muffins

3 tbsp flax seeds

½ cup water

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1 tbsp baking powder

¼ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ground ginger

¼ tsp allspice

3/4 cup coarsely chopped, toasted walnuts

½ cup apple sauce

½ cup honey

½ cup buttermilk

½ cup sourdough starter

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 large apple diced

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 24 cup mini muffin tin with olive oil spray and set aside.

In a blender, grind flax seeds to a powder. Add water and blend for forty-five seconds until thickened. Set aside.

In a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and walnuts.

In another large bowl, mix together all of the flax seed mixture with the apple sauce, honey, buttermilk, sourdough starter, vanilla extract and diced apples. Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Let stand for a few minutes to rise a little bit.

Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin cups. Put the muffin tin into the oven and bake for 20 minutes until the muffin tops are browned and a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Cool for a few minutes and then serve.

P.S. Any muffin batter can be baked as mini muffins instead. Just experiment with decreasing the amount of time they bake. Here is a list of muffins that have appeared on Delectable Tidbits before:

Blood orange sweet cherry corn muffins

Carrot-currant muffins

Coco-nutty-cocoa sourdough muffins

Orange poppy seed mini muffins

Peach and strawberry muffins

Sourdough strawberry walnut muffins



  1. April 30, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    Your dad is right. The aim really is to maintain your faculties – health, mobility, mental acuity – and sometimes it’s easy for those to take second place to the moment.
    Focus is tricky. I think your logic is fine, I use those kinds of tricks too. Perhaps my best is anything that is ‘special’ I either have to make myself – really I’m unlikely to bake a cake or cookies just for me every day – or I have to walk to the store to get it – one mile there, one mile home, that keeps things in check.
    I do love minis of anything. Bring on more mini pans 😉

    • Mimi said,

      April 30, 2010 at 2:56 pm

      Good idea about walking to the store to get it. My shopping center is a good 45 minutes walk each way from the house. I am way too lazy for any junk food to be worth that long of a trip!! 😀

  2. April 30, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    … and just think of all the calories that burn on a walk.

  3. bed frames said,

    May 1, 2010 at 5:39 am

    I would love to make this for my kids this coming weekend. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  4. May 1, 2010 at 8:05 am

    I am very happy for you, Mimi, because your goal is to have a healthy lifestyle and live a great life, instead of trying to become a stick. What’s even more awesome is that you aren’t giving up some of your tasty treats–portions and balance, eh?

    I wish you and your family happiness and luck ;] I’m having similar experiences, seeing my parents and family growing older and older and developing small issues. It hard to try to change their habits, but since I have better control over my own bad habits, hopefully, influencing won’t be as hard ;]

    Annnnnd, I like your strawberry muffins. I think that I’ve complimented before as well, hoho.

  5. May 1, 2010 at 9:26 am

    I do a muffin unit with my 12 year olds – grade 7’s – at school and by the time we are finished, they are designing their own muffins and understand the concept of muffin making enough to create a variety of delicious muffins that they have literally “made up” using their favourite flavour combinations. Well, not all are successful. But, more are successful – at twelve! That is why I love teaching foods!

    • Mimi said,

      May 1, 2010 at 11:36 am

      You are also teaching them to cook for themselves, which is very important. People stay healthier with those kinds of skills.

  6. Jeanne said,

    May 1, 2010 at 12:01 pm

    I love muffins, and I never get sick of reading muffin recipes! Yes, we do all struggle with portion control (at least I do, too, when it comes to sweets). I agree with your mini muffin logic. I’m going to have to dig out my mini muffin pans!

  7. Joanne said,

    May 2, 2010 at 4:41 am

    I agree with your dad. At this point, you can live with diabetes and lots of diseases well into old age, but don’t you want to still be running around and enjoying life while living to be that long?

    Every little bit helps when it comes to weight loss. Try not to focus on your mess-ups but on the good choices you have made. Congratulate yourself for those. Like making these mini muffins – an excellent first step. Especially since they look so delicious!

  8. Andreas said,

    May 4, 2010 at 11:36 am

    I think your mini muffin logic is fine.
    And how about a walk to the store and just buying … an apple? 🙂

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