It’s sort of a dreary day here in Kelowna so I needed something to lift my spirits a bit. Short of getting on a plane and heading to Mexico or Cuba I was in serious need of a happy-go-lucky snack—and the usual chocolate chip banana fare was not going to do the trick. Closing my eyes, the tropical island destination image was accompanied by that lazy day song “Put the Lime in the Coconut” by Harry Nillson. In fact, it kept going through my head over and over. A sign from the sun gods, perhaps? So I did a little search online to find a suitable muffin recipe and I couldn’t find one that satisfied my requirements: gluten-free and dairy-free. However, as I most always do, I ended up on Meghan Telper’s website and found her Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin recipe which I knew would be perfect to adapt. Aromatherapy is a must have today too–yes, for the utterly enlivening scent but also for the tropical effect in my muffins!
As an aromatherapist as well as a nutritionist, I am so keen to add some steam distilled lime essential oil to make these muffins pop. Anything to make this grey day just a little brighter. Quality is key and I always look for an essential oil product to list the latin name, country of origin and its extraction method. I want to make sure it’s not “cut” or combined with anything suspect. We’re talking 100% natural and pure…preferably organic if you’re going to be ingesting some. For this recipe choose steam-distilled since it won’t oxidize in the heat as rapidly as expeller pressed will. My most trusted supplier is Eden Botanicals. The aroma of Lime oil is said to have the ability to increase alertness, while the topical application of Lime oil in massage is said to have a relaxing, stress-relieving effect.1
Mandy Aftel, author and one of my favorite natural perfumers has written an enticing book called Aroma: The Magic of Essential Oils in Foods and Fragrance with enough recipes to keep this perfumer/nutritionist thrilled for awhile. She’ll show you how safely and most scrumptiously to use essential oils to turn your baking and creating into nose-sniffing and mouth-watering delights. Check out especially the recipe Chickpea Dip with Coriander and Lemon as well as Prawns and Wild Mushroom Stew with Ginger, just a few of my favorites.
But enough about scent, let’s talk about taste. Well, we really can’t isolate the two since most of what we perceive as “taste” also comes from what we smell. Taste itself is focused on distinguishing chemicals that have a sweet, salty, sour, bitter, or umami taste. Since our tongue has minimal receptors to process actual taste, the rest of what we perceive comes from our millions of smell receptors. Both tongue and nose receptors go hand in hand to give us that delicious experience known as flavor. Imagine if someone has lost their sense of smell (and this does happen sadly). They are missing out on so many rich experiences. In fact, loss of the sense of smell is linked with a zinc deficiency. If you notice your smell is not as acute as it has been eat zinc-rich foods such as pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, dark chocolate, garlic, chickpeas, pomegranates and seafood.
Lime in the Coconut Muffins
Besides enjoying a slightly tropical muffin on a dreary day, your mood is elevated with the addition of Lime steam distilled essential oil. Brighten your mood and your taste buds with this delicious gluten and dairy free muffin.
- Bowl #1 (large)
- 3/4 cup Bob's Redmill all purpose gluten-free flour
- 1/2 cup brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup organic oat flour (the only way to be sure your oats have not been contaminated with gluten)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- Bowl #2 (medium)
- 1 small container unsweetened apple sauce
- 2/3 cup coconut syrup
- 1/3 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1 T apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 15 drops steam-distilled lime essential oil
- Step 1 Line your muffin tin with parchment liners
- Step 2 Get the oven ready by preheating to 350 degrees
- Step 3 Whisk all ingredients of bowl #1 together
- Step 4 Blend all ingredients of bowl #2 with a hand-held mixer
- Step 5 Add bowl #2 to bowl #1 and blend again for 30 seconds
- Step 6 Fill your muffin liners nearly full then place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes
- Step 7 Remove and cool. Serve with love and enjoy!
- Rhind, Jennifer Peace. Essential Oils – A Handbook for Aromatherapy Practice, 2012, p. 208.