Same, Same … {but different}

I was catching up with a friend the other day and the friend made the comment “So…still the same old Melanie.” And, I blithely replied “Yes.”

But I’m not.

Why was I so glib with my response? The past couple of years have changed me more than I can admit and I don’t feel, even close, to the same person I was last year, last summer, or even last month (Thanx Eugenia. Click here if you’re not familiar with my constant companion.). And I’m not talking about going from blonde to red (much to my dismay I in no way resembled Christina Hendricks), to blonde, to quasi natural. Maybe I was rather off-hand with my reply because if you have to ask and you can’t see past the tangible, you don’t know me well enough to deserve to understand different.

I have the same appearance, on the outside. I dress the same. Still have long hair. Oh, I might carry a new handbag. Or wear an au currant shade of lip stain. But overall…the same. On the outside.

Yet I am different. Different enough to know who my close confidents are and why I count them as best friends. Different enough that I’m finally learning who I can count on long term and learning to better cherish their friendship. Different enough to feel okay with having people earn my trust in them instead of giving it out freely. Different enough that I’m better at protecting myself from being hurt.

That Eugenia…she teaches some tough lessons.

So, I guess I’m the same, same…but different. Kinda like these bran muffins. At first outward appearance they look like regular bran muffins. But, upon closer inspection you can taste complex subtleties like coffee. You get close enough to them, take the time to get to know them and you just might be pleasantly surprised.

{Not Your Regular} Bran Muffins

Source: me

  • 4 C whole wheat flour
  • 4 C bran
  • 1/2 C packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp.  rounded, baking powder
  • 2 tsp. rounded, baking soda
  • 1 tsp. rounded, salt
  • 2 C cold, strong brewed coffee
  • 2 C milk
  • 5 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 C oil
  • 1 1/2 C unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 C raisins (or substitute for whatever you might like: dried cranberries, fresh blueberries, etc)
  • optional: replace 1/2 C flour with 1/2 C ground flax
  • Soak the bran in the coffee.
  • Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  • Beat oil, sugar, apple sauce and eggs until very well combined. Add in milk and vanilla to combine. Add in bran/coffee mixture.
  • Whisk together dry ingredients and wet ingredients.
  • Stir in raisins (or whatever other yummy goods you’ve chosen).
  • Allow to stand at least four hours before baking.
  • Bake in paper muffin liners at 350 degrees for 20-23 minutes.
  • Makes 40 muffins.

*This batter can be stored in the fridge for up to six weeks.


  • Because these muffins are quite healthy (read super low in fat and calories. As in, you don’t need to run to the ends of the earth.) they are best after they’ve been frozen. I’m not sure why but super low fat, baked goods, are always better after they’ve been frozen. If you want a slightly less healthy version increase the oil to 1 C and decrease the apple sauce to 1 C. If you really don’t care at all, omit the apple sauce all together and use 2 C oil.
  • If you chose to store the batter in fridge and bake the muffins when you’re hungry for them add fresh ingredients as you bake them. Ie. if you’re adding berries instead of raisins add the berries just before you pop them in the oven.
  • If you’re baking the “low mileage” muffins don’t forget to line your muffin tray with paper liners. The muffins will stick even if you grease your muffin tins.
  • These muffins freeze really well. Because really…who has room for an ice-cream pail of muffin batter in their fridge?
  • Per muffin there is about 150 calories, 4 g fat, and 27 g carbs.
  • Same, same…but different. You’re kinda giggling if you’ve been to Thailand, Cambodia or Vietnam.

3 thoughts on “Same, Same … {but different}

  1. Hi Melanie,

    First – I love your blog! Second – these muffins rock. I love the sounds of coffee IN a bran muffin. My favorite bran muffin add-ins are chopped dates, blueberries, and chocolate. I’ve never tried all 3 together though, that just might be too crazy. 😉

    Thanks for sharing your awesomeness. 🙂

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