Have Deck, Will Freeze


We built a deck, and it’s the love of my  life. Ok, maybe that’s a bit of hyperbole, but I do love it enough to sit out here with my coffee in the chilly morning even though the couches are soaked! (Don’t worry, I brought a towel)

Coffee! That brings me to the other reason I’ve decided to pop back out of obscurity: muffins.

Apple sweet potato muffins, actually, moist and hearty with just a touch of sweetness, and begging for adaptation!


I’m sharing it because last night was one of those nights that threatens to push me over the proverbial edge. Not that it takes much these days, I’ve been teetering recklessly on the verge of insanty since the beginning of the grape harvest, around mid August. My other half works in the production division of one of this country’s largest wineries, so when the harvest starts, my sanity ends.

Two months of 12 hour shifts for hubby means 24 hour shifts for momma. We have another 2-3 weeks of this, but the good news is that he brings home the “medicine” that makes it all ok! L’chaim!


So last night, a half hour before he had to leave for the night shift (at dinner time) I made a mad dash to the store for flour and eggs, because we ran out of bread and Monday is my big kids’ long day at school, which means extra sandwiches. No problem! I have a lovely stand mixer at the ready, I can mix up a batch of bread while the kids eat dinner, it’ll rise during bedtime, by 9pm I’ll have sandwiches packed for everyone!

Except… my dough hook is missing. It’s still missing. Now it’s not that I can’t mix some bread by hand, but by the time I gave up looking for the dough hook, the kids had finished their dinner and it was time for PJ’s and stories. That’s when the next adventure ensued.

Did I mention that I broke a large Pyrex baking pan yesterday afternoon? Well, keep that in mind, it’s relevant.

At this point it’s around 8pm and im rummaging through the boxes of winter clothes that we just brought down from the attic to find footie sleepers. The 3 year old puts his on excitedly only to start crying. “There’s somesing shark in dere and it’s scratching me!” He’s so articulate! So we take it off, and sure enough, the soft fabric that usually covers the back of embroidery had been worn away and it was pretty “sharky” if I do say so. Duct tape is mother’s best friend! Taped over the sharp bits, and we’re back to hunky dory.

Five year old T is ecstatic in his cozy grey football sleeper, 7 year old O is surprisingly cooperative despite her sleeper being too small, and mister N10 year old is too busy reading “The Return of the King” to bother with pyjamas anyway.

So I sit on the couch and put on the baby’s footies. Well, suddenly he’s flailing like he’s possessed! It occurred to me to check if something was inside the PJ’s only because of the prior incident. I stick my hand inside the feet and feel around, but they seem fine.

Well, if he’s already undressed, I might as well wash that old cut on his big toe. That’s when I find tons of tiny shards of glass in his little feet! He’d been walking around barefoot all afternoon without the slightest complaint, until I tried to cover his feet! Poor baby! Thank God, just the soap and water washed most of them away. But there were five that needed to be dug out, N10 was a super helper, and my neighbor came and saved me too. That and the miraculous sedative powers of breast milk!

Ok, so now it 9-ish, 4 kids are sleeping peacefully with no sharp anythings poking or scratching them, 1 big kid is reading for 5 more minutes, but I still have no bread for sandwiches. And by now I’m exhausted.

That’s when these muffins happened. My ingredients were limited by 6 weeks of holiday meals, but I found an unspoiled sweet potato, a granny smith apple and combined it with my newly purchased whole wheat flower and eggs – and Viola! Muffins!


So now that the rain soaked through the towel I was sitting on, I will leave my lovely new deck and go inside to write the recipe. (And add some pictures!)

Apple Sweet Potato Muffins
Pre-heat oven the 350°

2 C flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4-1/2 C sugar
1/4 tsp salt
Coconut, raisins, pecans, chocolate chips, anything else your little heart desires…)
1 sweet potato shredded + 1 green apple shredded for a total of about 2 cups
1/3-1/2 C honey
1/2 C oil of your choice (butter, coconut oil, canola, olive…)
1/4 tsp (or more!) Cinnamon
Dash of salt
3 eggs
1/2 C milk
1 tsp vanilla

1.  Take all that dry stuff (flour, bang powder, sugar, salt, and additions) and mix them all together in a medium bowl.
2. Lightly beat the eggs in a separate bowl with the milk and vanilla. Put aside.
3. Combine all the wet stuff plus the cinammon and dash of salt in a saucepan over medium heat. (If using a solid fat, like butter or coconut, then I recommend melting that first them mixing in the honey, then adding the shredded apple and sweet potato. But it’ll work just as well to just toss it all in.)
4. Cook that until the sweet potatoes are soft and mushy (about 10 min) and then remove from heat and stir to cool.
5.  Temper the egg mixture by adding about a tablespoon at a time of the hot mixture to the egg mixture while stirring. Once the eggs are warm and you see they’re not going to scramble on you, you can add the rest of the hot stuff,just make sure you keep stirring!
6.  Pour that whole wet mixture into the dry bowl and stir gently to combine
7. Fill your muffin tins (mine made 18 muffins)
8. Bake for 30 min, until golden and a toothpick comes out clean.
9. Give it to your kids for lunch! (Or breakfast, or dinner… these days anything goes!)

Today I’m buying bread from the store.
The end.

This entry was posted in Aliyah, coffee, food, Golan Living, Israel, mothering, recipe, the long hard harvest. Bookmark the permalink.

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