As much as I hate to admit it, I’ve become a creature of habit. Another one of those contradictions I told you about a couple of days ago, considering I usually get bored with things very easily and I’m always looking for something new to do… But this daily routine I got going lately isn’t all that bad. It actually works for me. For now anyway.
My days consist mainly of 3 activities: exercising, cooking and writing. To accomplish the first two, I don’t need much: a gym, a kitchen, that’s it.
But when it comes to writing, four walls and a desk are definitely not my source of inspiration. I need noise, people, fresh air whenever possible… And an unlimited supply of coffee. I was lucky to find all of it a couple of years ago at a place called Jersey Java & Tea in Haddonfield, NJ.
This awesome coffee shop has been my favorite part of my daily routine for a while now. When I’m not in the kitchen or at the gym, you can usually find me here, sitting at the same table with my laptop, drinking (lots of) coffee.
There’s something special about small coffee shops that can’t be found in the big chains. Not that I have anything against the green and white cups (you know, the ones you pay lots of bucks for), but small coffee shops are just different. The whole atmosphere is more relaxed. People actually take the time to talk to you rather than rushing you to get your order in. And they’re the perfect way to support small local businesses, something we should all be doing more often.
And that’s exactly what you get when you come to Jersey Java. I don’t know, maybe it’s because it reminds of the little cafes in Barcelona, but I just love this place. Coffee’s great. People are great. And they’re actually knowledgeable and passionate about what they do. They host coffee tastings, home brewing classes and even open mic nights.
Ken, the manager, will tell you anything you wanna know about coffee. Mary, one of the owners, bakes the most amazing muffins and quiche from scratch using all natural ingredients. Something hard to find nowadays…
High quality treats and gourmet coffee was just the inspiration I needed to come up with this recipe: a vegan version of their amazing looking pumpkin muffins. Super moist, with just a touch of spice, and hopefully just as delicious!
So if you’re ever in the area and looking to get your caffeine fix, or a freshly baked treat or just a place to relax and learn a little something about coffee, stop by Jersey Java & Tea. It might become your favorite hang out too… Just as long as you don’t steal my table
- ⅓ cup plus 1 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk (we use Silk Pure Almond)
- 2 tbsp flax meal
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 3 tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup (here we used Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blue Agave)
- ⅓ cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1½ cups self rising flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ⅔ cup sugar (we use Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Sugar)
- 1½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- Streusel topping:
- 1 tbsp coconut oil at room temperature
- 2 tbsp brown sugar (we use Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Dark Brown Sugar)
- 2 tbsp flour
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with muffin liners (preferably foil) and spray them lightly with cooking spray
- In a small bowl, combine almond milk and flax meal. Set aside
- In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, agave, coconut oil and vanilla extract. Add almond milk/flax mixture and mix well.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar,pumpkin pie spice, salt and walnuts. Slowly add to pumpkin mixture, whisking gently until just incorporated (do not over mix!). Set aside
- In a small bowl, combine streusel ingredients, mixing gently with your fingers or a fork.
- Spoon batter evenly in muffin cups. Sprinkle tops with streusel mixture. Bake at 350F until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20-23 minutes