For a period of time when I was a kid there were always muffins in the house. My mom could be found in the kitchen first thing in the morning, bleary-eyed, coffee by her side, making muffins at least once a week. I remember asking her once why she was making muffins and her reply was, “Because they are easy.” I immediately thought, “Yeah, right.” At that point in time I had removed myself from my parents’ attempts at showing me and including me in baking and cooking. As an adult who now loves to bake, I get it. Muffins are so easy and fast – they also store and travel really well. Oh, and the amount of variety you can get in that tiny little package…the sky is the limit.

Last night I found myself feeling a little antsy. When I start feeling antsy it usually means an anxiety attack is on its way if I do not find an outlet, and fast. Not feeling so hot, or so inspired, writing and choreographing (two of my creative outlets) were out. Baking was my next logical choice. Baking brings me great joy and the process of precisely measuring and mixing becomes meditative, calming me. I turned on some old school Ani DiFranco, poured myself a glass of wine, and settled into my kitchen for a night of baking. My heart was set on making my “famous” blueberry scones and chocolate chip cookies, but I was out of sugar. Probably for the best as I am currently trying not to eat sugar. So, on to making muffins.

Here’s the recipe I used:

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins – makes 12 muffins


  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  • 3/4 cup garbanzo bean flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup agave syrup
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1/3 cup poppy seeds


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • In a large bowl combine all the flour, baking soda, and salt
  • In a separate bowl combine the canola oil, water, apple cider vinegar, vanilla, lemon extract, agave syrup, and maple syrup.
  • Mix the wet ingredients then slowly mix in the dry ingredients. Add the poppy seeds at the very end.
  • Evenly divide the batter into 9 muffin tin cups.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes – until muffin tops are golden brown.

Mom, twenty-some years later, I finally get it. And, thank you for all the delicious muffins.


About djunapassman

I teach yoga, write, and edit. I live in a Brooklyn neighborhood that is changing faster than I can, or care to, keep up with. Manhattan still beckons me to her island a few subways stops away, reminding me of when I lived amongst her daily hustle and bustle.
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