Bran Muffins

Even if you don’t like bran muffins, you really should try these.  Unbelievably moist and flavorful.  By far my favorite ever.  I’ve been on a search for a great bran muffin recipe, and was excited to find this one especially because it doesn’t require a premade cereal to make.  I added some cranberries and thought they really added a great flavor, but you could of course use all raisins as in the original recipe. 
Adapted from David Lebovitz
2 cups wheat bran
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried cranberries (or 1/2 cup additional raisins)
1 1/2 cups water, seperated
1/2 cup buttermilk or low or non fat yogurt (I used buttermilk)
2 tsp dried orange zest (or fresh)
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
SPread the wheat bran on a baking sheet and toast in the oven at 350 degrees for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring a few times. Let cool.
Heat 1 cup of the raisins with 1/2 cup of the water in a small saucepan, simmering for 10 minutes or until the water is all absorbed.  Puree the raisins in a food processor or blender until smooth.
Mix together in a large bowl the taosted bran, buttermilk or yogurt, remaining 1 cup of water, then mix in the raisin puree, orange zest, and brown sugar.
Stir in the oil, egg, and egg white.
Mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir into the wet ingredients.
Stir just until combined, then add the cranberries (or additional raisins).
Spoon into a muffin tin lined with paper liners.
Made about 16 standard muffins.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, or until muffins feel set in the center.
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