Scared, Hot and Running plus Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins

by Joanne on August 15, 2012

Being flexible with ones training schedule is one thing but when you get up knowing you could do the workout THEN skip it anyway, there is a sense of guilt that stays with you all day.  What to do?   Train after work. 

This week is a pretty easy week since I’m running a half marathon on Sunday in Watkins Glen and taking a mini taper.  I’m not doing weights this week, just runs.  So on Tuesday was a warm up, tempo run for about 5 miles then a cool down. I got up then went back to bed THEN proceeded to feel rotten about my choice all day.  The only way to get out of my guilt trip was force the training session after work, therefore still getting it done on Tuesday. 

It was rough and tough and challenging. I went to the canal trail which is unfamiliar to me except for the times I’ve run the Hall of Fame Half which goes out and back along said trail. 

There was no on around when I headed out. The trail has a lot of bushes and trees on either side and, for some reason I was very nervous.  I headed out too fast for a warm up so when it came time to do the tempo miles, I only had 2 in me at goal pace.  Overall my pace was pretty good, 8:39 for 9 miles which is as close to a race pace as I can get running by myself.  I had nothing left in the end but then again, it was 80 degrees, sun was shining and I didn’t have anything to fuel my run, not even water. 

I was going to run 4 1/2 miles in but then a lady with two dogs stopped me to warn me about an out of control pit bull up ahead. That scared me and I turned around at 4.1 miles.  The thought of making the Utica paper under the heading “Runner Mauled by Pit Bull”  didn’t appeal. 

I was 2 miles from my car when Ted came riding along on his bike. YAY! Safe!  

It was a creepy run but it made me run at a good clip.  In the end, not quite the tempo run workout as planned but still a speed workout.

Time for a COCOA MUFFIN!

Yield Makes 10 muffins

Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins1

I made a dish the other night that used a curry sauce. The base of that sauce was lite coconut milk.  Since very little coconut milk was required, I had 3/4 of a can left. What could I do with it?!  We so rarely use coconut milk so I thought I’d quickly whip up some muffins while the milk was still fresh.  The coconut milk cocoa muffins are the result.  Great idea, if I do say so myself.

Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins2

Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins3

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup Lite Coconut Milk
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup coconut

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 12 cup muffin pan with non stick spray or line with baking cups.

Add flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt into medium sized bowl. Set aside.

In another bowl, with an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat in oil and sugar until smooth.

Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Mix in vanilla.

Add flour mixture, alternately with Coconut Milk, ending with flour. Beat until just incorporated. Do not over mix or muffins will be tough. Stir in chocolate chips.

Fill muffin tins 2/3 full and sprinkle with coconut.  

Bake 25 minutes or when a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins4

Mmmm…chocolate and coconut. Just my style.

Coconut Milk Cocoa Muffins5

Since posting the recipe above, I’d be remiss if I didn’t offer the latest news from Nutritional outlook regarding cocoa products and low level toxins.  Nothing to worry about.  Research is ongoing.

Nutritional Outlook has introduced information regarding a low level of toxin found in cocoa. Darn it! Now we have to beware of chocolate. source

The fact is that experts have known for a long time about the contaminant called Ochratoxin A which is a fungus derived from mycotoxin (the nasty stuff produced by mold). The ochratoxin A grows naturally during fermentation but really comes to life during drying and storage.

Researchers found the presence of the toxin in almost all cocoa products from nibs to cocoa powder and even chocolate cake. Don’t get all worked up yet since the exposure is "generally low" but more investigation is ongoing since the effects are not yet fully understood. There is a concern however since chocolate products are consumed a lot by children and younger people are especially sensitive to mycotoxins.

Cocoa powder was found to be the most contaminated and cocoa butter, the least. There is a group "Working Group On OTA in Cocoa" in Ghana who is developing codes for the level of ochratoxin A in cocoa.

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  • At 2012.08.15 20:02, lindsay said:

    oooh! these look good. will have to try them (although subbing in my newfound coconut flour in lieu of ‘regular’ flour).

    • At 2012.08.16 12:04, Heather said:

      Gosh, that happens to me, too. I get scared and end up running so much faster than usual. Makes me wonder if I’m faster than I think? 😉

      • At 2012.08.16 21:26, Colleen, The Smart Cookie Cook said:

        You live in Utica? Me too! I go to Utica College actually. God bless you running after work. I have to do it in the morning because I just don’t have it in me later in the day. I love that you used coconut milk in the muffins. They look wonderful!

        • At 2012.08.17 05:49, Choc Chip Uru said:

          Scared is definitely the best way to get those legs working up a little bit more sweat 😀
          Great job with these muffins my friend, I am in love with this!

          Choc Chip Uru

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