Walnut Crumb Banana Muffins


Upon noticing an onslaught of bananas in my frozen hoard and an indecent craving for sweet comfort food, (like I haven’t been eating enough of that lately) I hit my freezer stash and thawed a few bananas.

Even though they go against a local market movement, they were light, sweet and deceivingly healthy (ish). The candied walnuts further pushed these banana muffins to almost gourmet status.

Well, you be the judge:


BANANA MUFFINS

3 Ripe Bananas
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, packed
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda

WALNUT CRUMB TOPPING

1/2 Cup Walnut Halves or Pieces
1/4 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
1/3 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Margarine
1/8 teaspoon Salt

Preheat the oven to 350º.
Sift the flour, baking powder and baking soda; set aside.
With a fork, mash the bananas in a large bowl.
Add the oil, brown sugar, vanilla and salt; mix well.
Once well combined, add the sifted flour in batches, mixing only to moisten.
Line cooking tin with muffin papers and add enough batter to fill them 2/3 up.

In a small bowl, melt 1 tablespoon of the topping margarine. Toss the walnuts in the melted margarine, sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar to coat evenly; set aside.
Combine the remaining margarine and brown sugar with the flour,oats and salt. Mix completely with a fork.
Add spoonfuls of the topping to the waiting muffin batter and top evenly with a few of the sugared walnut pieces.

Bake at 350º on the centre rack for 18 minutes, until firm and golden or insert and remove a toothpick. The muffins are moist but it should come out fairly clean.
Allow muffins to rest in the tin before moving to a rack to cool.

Makes about 10 -12 muffins.

Cindy over at Where’s the Beef tried them out, giving some really great play by play photos along the way!

Juice And A Muffin


Twelve Grain Breakfast Muffins are by far my favourite muffins – breakfast or otherwise.
The are so quick and versatile I think I’ve prepared about twenty or so variations.
This latest combination is my current favourite.

Wanting more than a traditional burnt raisin and bran muffin, I first began eating these to get the obvious fiber addition in a grab and go breakfast. When I realized I could eat the whole lot straight from the oven I knew I had my winner.
I’ve tried them with different fruit combinations but one thing always remained, the wonderfully moist centre and crisp outer edges – perfect. This is why could I not resist sharing these for the Muffin Monday 04 round up.

Mostly hands off they’re almost faster to make that your morning coffee (or juice as this day would have it).
Toss the moist ingredients together, take a shower, return to mix in the dry and bake it while you get dressed and blend your juice. Nothing says breakfast more than orange juice, however these are my favourite muffins so the to make the juice a little bit more add a handful of seasonal strawberries and a banana, frozen if you have one on hand. Blend until smooth and check the muffins. Depending on your muffin size it’s, ten to fifteen minutes in the oven, one minute to cool and no time to enjoy!

12 GRAIN BREAKFAST MUFFINS

3/4 Cup 12 Grain Cereal Mix
1/4 Cup Rolled Oats
1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries
1/4 Cup Broken Pecans
1/3 Cup Canola Oil
1 Cup Soy Milk
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, Packed
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
3 Tablespoons Orange Juice or 1 teaspoon of orange zest

Prep muffin tins with a light spritz of spray oil.
In a large bowl, combine the sugar, cinnamon and salt. Add the cereal, oatmeal and stir in the milk and oil.
Allow everything to absorb and soften for 15 – 20 minutes. If you are hard pressed for time, you may skip this step.
Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
Add the baking powder and soda, then stir in the juice (or zest, if using).
Add the flour, combining only enough to moisten everything – try not to over work.
Spoon into prepared tins and bake 10 minutes for mini-muffins and 15 minutes for regular sized muffins or until golden and slightly crisp around the edges.

GOOD MORNIN’ SUNSHINE JUICE

2 Cups Orange Juice, freshly squeezed is of course the best
2/3 Cup Fresh, Hulled Strawberries
1 Banana, Frozen

Blend everything on high, until the fruit is puréed and everything is smooth.
If you’re not usually a pulp lover, you might want to strain the strawberry seeds.

*Note: If you don’t have a frozen banana on hand, just crush an ice cube or two to get the chilled slush goodness.