28 January 2014

my mini apple muffins at a breakfast buffet

While checking the contents of Caila’s school envelope a few weeks ago, I found a letter amongst her diary and homework. It was a invitation for the mothers to bring and serve healthy goodies for the FS2 Healthy Breakfast Buffet that Thursday. It wasn’t something that we had to do, plus it was a weekday, so I didn’t think about it anymore. However, the next day Caila told me that she really wanted me to participate. Yikes! A part of me didn’t want to give in, but then a bigger part of me felt guilty. Sure it wasn’t a major event and it wasn’t a requirement, but again, I kept remembering last year when Caila was disappointed at me and her daddy for not being at her very first school Sports Meet. Eventually of course, I agreed. My workload that week was manageable and I knew my manager would let me if I applied for a half-day leave from work.

Once that decision had been made, I asked Caila what she wanted me to bring from the list that was given. One by one I read the items, but out of the choices (almost all of which could easily be bought from the supermarket), she picked “mini-muffins.” Ohh-kay. The major supermarkets sell several types of mini-muffins; there wouldn’t be any problem in buying a couple of dozen packs. But when she said “I want apple muffins like the ones you make. I will help you, Mommy,” I knew there was no easy way out. I just HAD TO make these for her.

There was only one minor problem: I didn’t have a mini-muffin pan. I had a regular muffin pan, but the list specifically said “mini-muffins;” and considering these kids’ appetites, minis were the way to go to avoid wastage. So the following night (the night before the buffet) Hubby and I went to a baking supply store in Deira, but it was just my luck that they didn’t have any. We had already passed Carrefour and the traffic was getting heavier, losing us more time. Fortunately, after checking two different places, I managed to find the very last mini-muffin pan in Lulu Hypermarket hidden at the very back of the rack behind the rest of the baking equipment. Someone must have hidden it there and planned on going back to get it later.

We then rushed to get apples, pay for the items, then straight home so that we could have dinner and I could start baking.

Caila was excited the whole time I was making the muffins. She was very helpful too, handing me the ingredients and equipment that I asked for, mixing the batter, and saying “It smells very yummy, Mommy!” and then “Mummy, it’s very tasty and delicious!” after she finished a piece. She actually finished 3 that night =)

Since we didn’t have any liners, it was a good thing that I had printed out some school-theme flags earlier which I cut out and attached to toothpicks before sticking them into the muffins. The little toppers made them look more appealing.
I had managed to make almost 3 dozen mini-muffins (plus the 3 that Caila ate, 1 that Hubby tasted, and a few more for home consumption) to take to the school which I packed in aluminium trays. The following morning at the school, several mothers were already there waiting with their own goodies, and at 8am, we were asked to set up whatever we brought.

There were cereals and milk, yoghurt, juice, sandwiches, fruits, croissants, corn, and muffins of course.

After a while, the children began coming out. Kids of each section took turns in going around the buffet spread to take whatever they wanted, and then go to their assigned tables to enjoy their food.
I was sharing the “Muffins Area” with two other mommies who had brought store-bought muffins. Of course, since most of them were chocolate-flavoured, they were the first ones to run out. However, my muffins weren’t totally ignored because the little school toppers caught several kids’ eyes, making them reach out or ask for a piece.

Finally, just 3 mini-muffins were left on a tray and all the kids had finished eating. Suddenly, one of the mothers who had also been handing out muffins from another table approached me and asked if she could get one because she also thought the flags looked cute. Of course I said yes. When that happened, the mother standing beside me also took one. And then right after she put it in her mouth, another mother came and took the last remaining muffin. They all said they were delicious, and one of them even asked for the recipe!
the school principal thanking the mommies
So all in all, it was a success. Tiring, but definitely worth it. And to make it more rewarding, when Caila arrived at home a few hours later, she gave me this sticker which she got from the “Cereal Area” earlier.
When I asked her why, she said “Because you came to my school and you made my favourite apple muffins for my classmates,” topping it off with a tight hug and a “Thank you, Mommy.” Awww! Ang sarap, di ba?

I am sooo glad I took part in the buffet!

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