I set out on a mission to find the perfect peach muffin recipe this morning. I wanted it to be whole grain, with lots of oats. I tried a gluten free version, a vegan version and two whole-wheat recipes, and the very last one was the closest to what I was looking for. By the time I got around to it I only had enough peaches for half the muffins, so I used strawberries in the other half, and they were equally delightful. You could eat these for breakfast, but they’d be equally good if gently warmed and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream after dinner. The flax seeds add a little fiber without affecting the taste, and I like sliced almonds as a topping that’s crunchy, without the trouble (or the extra sugar) of making a streusel.

Makes 12 muffins.

Whole Wheat Peach (or Strawberry) Oat Muffins

Dry Mix:

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

3/4 cup all purpose flour

3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 cup raw cane sugar

1 tblsp. ground flax seeds

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

a generous pinch of salt

Wet Mix:

3/4 stick of butter, melted and cooled slightly

3/4 cup milk 

1/2 cup sour cream or yoghurt (sour cream will be slightly more tender because it has more fat)

1 egg

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 tsp cinnamon

2 large peaches, or 12 strawberries

1/2 cup sliced almonds

Line a muffin tin with paper baking cups.

Pre-heat oven to 400˚F.

Slice the peaches thinly, then cut the slices in half crosswise. If using strawberries, quarter them.

Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.

In a different bowl, combine all the wet ingredients and whisk well to combine.

Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and use a rubber spatula to gently combine the two. Do not overmix, or the muffins will be tough and have little tunnels in them. There may be little flecks of flour left…don’t worry about it! They will mix in while baking.

Using a large spoon, fill the muffin cups almost to the top. Push a generous amount of fruit into each muffin (I used one strawberry per muffin, and about 1/8 of a large peach. Be generous, but don’t add so much that you end up with a pool of juice inside each muffin). Sprinkle with almonds.

Bake for 10 minutes at 400˚F (this will make them dome a bit), then turn the temperature down to 350˚F and bake another 15-20 minutes. They are done when the tops are golden brown, and when a toothpick inserted to the center comes out clean.