20 May 2012

Ode to Muffin

This is hard. Sometimes in order to let go of a thing you need to weigh it with all its glories and pitfalls. I chose the word "weigh" with intent.

I love muffins. I simply do. In times of trouble there's nothing I'd rather do then hunker down with a good book, a gallon or so of coffee and a basket of muffins then draw the blinds and disappear for a weekend.

I am to muffins as Tom Waits is to cookies and I am in one of the deadliest muffin cities in the world.

The Contenders

With its coffee culture it's not too surprising that Vancouver is a place with some excellent muffin selections, each different in their splendour and variety.

Grounds for Coffee is famous for their gooey cinammon buns and, don't get me wrong, they are incredible but they also make muffins. I recommend the oatmeal muffins which, at last sighting were the size of a small dog.

mangez mangez vancouver also has some amazing berry and banana muffins but they sell out by 11AM so get there early.

Lately though, my muffin of choice and obsession has been the JJ Bean "Very Berry". There's a pumpkin-apple one that I like too and the cranberry-oat one is quite superb but so far very-berry is my favourite. It's vegan friendly too but don't let it fool you into thinking it's good for you. More on that in a bit.

I'm not alone:

Morning ritual

The JJ Bean outside CBC studios opens at 7:30AM sharp which, on a good day, is exactly when I'm passing through on my way to work. As the shutters open a glorious, muffinous breeze wafts out and surrounds anyone directly in what I will refer to as the "muffin kill zone". Because of the way the mirrored windows in the library building face I sit and bask in the glorious double-sunrise while I sip my rather excellent coffee and slowly devour my giant baked good.

I've come to realize that the ritual of this is as important as the food itself. Taking a moment to enjoy something beautiful at the start of every day is something I'm not sure anyone would find exception to except for.

The Downside

I looked high and low but couldn't find any nutritional information about JJ Bean muffins specifically. A little research though showed that muffins of such splendour and girth can clock in at 630 calories. That's more than a big mac (540)!

I don't know why but there's always this feeling that fresh-baked goods have to be healthier than fast food. Actually if you compare the toxins and carcinogens that's probably still true. Maybe muffins are just a really healthy way to get fat.

Seeing how I can't really do this weight-loss experiment AND consume a 630 calorie breakfast this is going to have to stop now.

Farewell muffins. It's not you. You're perfect. It's me.

Note: I'm writing this in a JJ Bean. Thank god all the muffins are sold out.


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