Another week, another muffin recipe. This time by request from one of Michael’s work colleagues, Lucia. The muffin phenomenon is relatively new here in the UK but even so, I can’t help noticing that they are everywhere. I hadn’t realised how ubiquitous they had become but maybe I should have seeing as this is my third muffin recipe in two months. See here and here for the previous two.
These banana breakfast muffins are a staple in our house and get eaten as mid-morning snacks or a healthy breakfast-on-the-go. They come in at only 230 calories per muffin and have seeds, dried fruit and wholemeal flour on offer on the health front. The bananas make them naturally sweet so there’s only a minimal amount of honey added. Their other virtue is they can be very cheap to make if you pick up bananas from those stalls where they sell everything in bowls for a set price – a quid, usually. The downside to this way of buying fruit and vegetables is that the items usually need to be used that day, but for banana breads and muffins this is exactly how you want them. I’ve discovered you can also freeze them for later use. I’ve experimented with freezing them peeled and whole but whole works best (see below – there was no way to take a pretty picture of frozen bananas but I tried). When you defrost and peel them there will be some liquid and the bananas will look a bit limp. Throw the whole lot, liquid and all into the recipe and proceed as for fresh bananas; the muffins come out exactly the same. As the bananas defrost the skins will blacken, don’t be alarmed! They’re fine to use. You can freeze the muffins in a zip-lock bag and take them out individually as and when you need them so there is no waste.
4 medium bananas
2 tbsp honey or molasses
300g wholemeal self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp cinnamon (or whatever spice you prefer – nutmeg, ginger, caraway seeds, etc)
4 oz seeds, toasted in a dry pan
4 oz dried fruit of your choice
2 eggs, beaten
A little milk
Mash the bananas in a big bowl with the honey – use a potato masher. Stir in the beaten eggs followed by the seeds and fruit. Sieve in the dry ingredients. This will leave some bran in the sieve, just throw it back into the bowl. Add enough milk to achieve a dropping consistency. Stir to combine and quickly divide between 12 prepared muffin cases set in a muffin tray. Bake for 20-25 minutes until well risen and then remove the muffins onto a cooling rack or you’ll get soggy-bottomed muffins, and no-one wants that. As soon as they are cool either put them in an airtight container or pop them into the freezer in a zip-lock bag. If you take one (or two) out and pop it in your lunch box it will be more or less defrosted by the time you get to work but you can always give a gentle warm in the microwave if it’s a tad on the cold side.
Hope you enjoy them, Lucia!