Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Oh how things have changed!

It has been almost 3 weeks since me and 1700 of my colleagues went on strike. I can't lie, this has not been easy so far. I come home everyday completely exhausted, my feet are killing me and my arms are often num from carrying heavy signs, playing the drums or from shaking various noise maker. I originally thought that I would have more time to cook, more time to myself, but it seems like I have never been busier. But it has not all been bad. Although I only met most of these people when the strike started a few weeks ago, there is a huge sense of community, almost as if we are one big family, on the picket line. I have met truly amazing people who have devoted their life to the University and have now seen their benefits and pension slashed away without any warning. It's people like them that give me the energy to go out there and fight for what's right everyday. Walking around for hours everyday also has its perks, I've already shed a pound since the beginning of the strike so I guess that's good.

All jokes aside, everyday as I walked the picket line on the very spot my husband and I said "I do" (or rather were going to say I do until rain started poring and we had to run inside to finish the ceremony, but that's a story for another time) I feel a little angry. Angry that after dedicating so much of my time, energy and some would say my life for the University I have to fight to save what little is left of my benefits and to get a shot at what I can't even call a decent salary. I have sang McGill's praise for over 10 years, I have 2 degrees from McGill, I live on campus and I have been working there for  over 7 years now, working overtime every week, not asking for a dime in return and that's how McGill thanks me? I guess times have change, because there used to be a time when faithful and hard working employees were actually rewarded for their work. Oh well!

In the spirit of the strike, the recipe I have chosen is one that can be easily eaten while walking the line or that can be a delicious breakfast on the go. This is one of my all time favourite muffin recipe. My mom has been making it for me for ages and I make it whenever I can. Of course over time I've changed the recipe to reflect my tastes, but the basis is the same that my mom cut out of the cereal box many many years ago.
Although you can enjoy the muffins on their own at room temperature, I much prefer them warmed up and with a little better (you can't be healthy all the time!). This recipe can easily be doubled and leftover muffins can be frozen. Hope you enjoy these as much as I do! Bon appetit!

All-Bran Muffins
(Based on a Kellogg's recipe)

1 1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
A pinch of salt
1 1/2 cup All-Bran cereals
1 1/2 cup milk
1/4 vegetable oil
1/3 cup molasses
1 egg
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup dates chopped
Pre-heat the oven at 400F.
Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl (I tend to use my Kitchenaid mixer to do all my muffins) pour the milk and the cereals. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes or until the cereals have started to softened.
Add the oil, the molasses and the egg. Mix well.
Incorporate the dry flour mixture. Do not over mix.
Add the raisins and the dates.

Poor the mix into muffin tins (lightly floured or with muffin cups). You should get 12 muffins for this recipe.
Bake for 18-20 minutes.

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