Tu B’Shvat muffins, bikes and daisies

Three years ago, when I started teaching, I wanted to make Tu B’Shvat muffins (that is muffins that have all the seven species in them). So I came up with a recipe, testing and tasting and changing. I remember the kids being like “What, really? You’re making muffins again? OK!”

Then the next year I made it vegan because one of my students did not eat animal products. I found I liked that one better, and used it again today. I was reminded of how much I like them. (If you’re really only here for kid pictures, just skip past the recipe and resume below.)

In case you’ve been wanting to make a Tu B’Shvat muffin recipe (even though by now the holiday is two weeks long gone, and aside from the fact that I think exactly zero of you look at my blog for recipes), here you go. I’m sharing because I’m kind of proud of the recipe, because it was a lot of trial and error and I feel quite a bit of ownership of it. Oh, and in case you’re wondering how to remember the seven species of Tu B’Shvat, just remember the mnemonic my class came up with. “On weird days pigs fly by gracefully.” Olives, wheat, dates, pomegranates, figs, barley and grapes.

Tu B’Shvat muffins – not just for Tu B’Shvat

Chop into quarters:

  • ½ cup dates
  • ½ cup figs

Then add dates and figs to food processor, along with:

  • ½ cup of coconut milk (solid part)
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 3/4 cup pomegranate juice (I recommend the Just Pomegranate, not the watered down stuff)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Blend until smooth!

In a bowl, add

  • 2 T ground flaxseed and 4T water (let sit for 5 minutes until gelled)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla

In a separate bowl, add

  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup barley flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Mix all together.  Don’t overmix or your muffins will get tough.

Add 1 cup golden raisins. Add chopped almonds if using.

Pour into muffin tins.

Then add topping (some cinnamon and sugar mixed together) and ….. Bake!

———>Continue here for post-recipe greenhenery

While I was making muffins with my students (actually, while I was not making muffins because I like my students to do their own work, including cleaning up – you can just ask them about that!), Z learned to ride a bike with no training wheels and no help! She is super proud of herself, and at dinner offered to teach her older sister how to do it. (Older sister did not take super well to this helpful offer, as she mostly does know how to ride. It’s just that she doesn’t entirely know. She wants help starting, and sometimes she’s really really scared to start, and then she’s not so confident with the stopping either. So little sister offered (so super kindly and genuinely!) to help her big sister learn how to ride a bike, and said big sister countered that she knew how to ride.) M and I (wisely) kept our mouths shut and tried not to smile, while H looked at us to see our reactions.






A friend of H’s (and the rest, but mostly H’s) attacked our children with daisies.





And M pushed the button to make Netflix global. In a room called a war room.


You might think she’s sound asleep in the picture, but her dimples give her away.



And finally, the two littler ones mowing the lawn. (This was not a posed pic. They really mowed almost the whole thing together!) Also, as a side note, it’s hilarious that Z is going through a bathing suit phase while N is going through a long underwear phase.