Not Your Grandmother’s Prunes

Let’s start by calling them dried plums. Maybe this will help lift the stigma surrounding these sweet, soft, chewy bites. Nutritionally, research indicates that dried plums provide significant protective effects on bones. Dried plums have a high phenolic content (antioxidant value) and contain vital nutrients including zinc, magnesium, manganese, copper, boron, and potassium, all of which are beneficial for bone health. Studies suggest that as little as 6 dried plums (50 grams) per day can improve bone density. Did I convince you yet? How, you ask, do I include dried plums in my diet? Add them to smoothies, muffins, salads and desserts or grab a few as a sweet, chewy snack. Here are two delicious recipes featuring dried plums; Tropical Carrot Muffins and Double Chocolate Cake. Cheers to dried plums and your bones!

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Tropical Carrot Muffins



Ingredients

  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup diced prunes
  • ¼ cup crushed pineapple (drained)
  • ¼ cup shredded coconut

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk flour with oats, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg until combined; set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk. brown sugar, oil egg and vanilla until smooth. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in carrots, pineapple, prunes and coconut. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake 20-25 minutes until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

JudyMatusky.com

Double Chocolate Cake

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Double Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour and 3/4 cup all-purpose flour)

1/2 cup cocoa powder

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder

1/4 cup prune puree*

1/3 cup canola oil

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup cold water

1/2 cup dark chocolate, cut up into small pieces

Directions

Set oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 x 4 inch loaf pan with cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, coffee powder and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk prune puree, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix until crumbly. Pour water over the top and stir until completely combined. Fold in chocolate pieces. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 35-40 minutes until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Note: This cake is chocolatey and moist. My daughter wants it for her birthday cake and my son thought is was very good. My husband thought it tasted like Dr. Pepper. Which is interesting because rumors at one time suggested that Dr. Pepper contained prune juice (which it does not).

JudyMatusky.com

*Recipe for prune puree below

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Prune Puree

Combine 1 1/2 cups prunes with 6 tablespoons hot water in a food processor. Puree until smooth.

Nutrition Note: Prune puree is an excellent substitute for some of the the butter or oil in recipes. You can substitute prune puree for 1/2 of the oil in most recipes without sacrificing flavor or texture plus you’re benefiting from all of those bone strengthening nutrients.

Source: www.sunsweet.com

I did not receive any compensation from the Sunsweet brand. It’s just the brand of prunes I found in the supermarket.

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