Alright. First things first, I lied about the celebration cake. Not about its existence entirely, because it was, and was consumed, but I did lie about it being the next post. It shall be next-next.
And in case you hadn’t picked it up from the title, this post is about bananas! More precisely, Banana-Streusel Muffins.
You see, there is an overabundance of overripe bananas in my apartment at all times. This comes from an error in figuring out the relationship between the number of bananas bought, rate of banana decay, and number of bananas (likely to be) consumed. And these terrible miscalculations result in the spawning of fruit flies. I loathe fruit flies. In case you live in the Arctic, and have never encountered a fruit fly, this is what a typical fruit fly looks like:
To reduce fruit fly populations in my kitchen, I have been peeling and freezing excess bananas at the height of ripeness to combat the speed with which the fruit flies can multiply (I shall triumph over exponential growth!) As such, the banana situation gets a little out of control, and I find myself leafing through cookbooks, desperately trying to not do banana bread, again. I had been thinking of doing a banana cookie (anybody have a favorite recipe?), but had recently been given some sweet silicone muffin cups, so I decided to take them for a test run and simultaneously free up half of my freezer space.
I modeled this recipe on Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything, taking the base recipe of “Muffins, Infinite Ways” and combining the Banana-Nut variation with the Coffee Cake variation and adding my own various tweaks, mostly hinging on what happened to be in my cabinets the day I made these.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 cup smashed bananas
- 1/4 cup chopped nuts (I used the ancient walnuts at the back of my fridge)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (or cinnamon, or whatever)
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
Heat the oven to 375*F. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin (or if you have the handy dandy silicone cups, just let them hang out on a baking sheet).
Sift the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add chopped nuts to the dry ingredients. Beat the egg, milk, oil, honey, and bananas in another bowl. Make a well in the center of the dry, and pour the wet ingredients into it. Use a large wooden spoon (as large, and as old, and as curry stained as you can find), and combine the ingredients briskly; stir and fold, don’t beat! Stop as soon as there are no more dry streaks, or else. The batter should be lumpy and thick.
Mix together the brown sugar, nutmeg and butter (streusel mixture). Add batter to the muffin tins, filling 1/3 full. Add streusel mixture over top the batter (1-2 tablespoons, or until batter is well covered). Add batter over top the first streusel layer to the muffin tins, filling to 2/3 fullness. Add streusel mixture again, to the top off each muffin.
Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick or cake tester or kebab skewer comes out mostly clean. (A few crumbs clinging is usually fine.) Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before taking out of tins.
Up next, celebrations and cakes, I promise.
For some reason, I have been absurdly afraid of officially starting this blog — mostly for reasons of accountability. I know that once I start writing, I’ll want to try to have something new to put up every week, and my schedule in terms of work and school have been challenging, to say the least.
However, after building this blog at least 3 (ok, maybe 6) months ago, to stop by and stare approvingly at the blank screen before moving onto some much more rewarding pursuit (like Facebook), I have decided to write this pre-post to lessen the massive pressure of the first post. I know, I know, it’s all in my head, and this blog is so new, and so unformed, no one’s reading the first post anyways, but to me, the first post is representative of the blog, and the essence of what the blog is trying to accomplish. Apparently, from the way this is going, my blog is attempting to accomplish convoluted-ness and lack of direction.
But that stops now! This blog is about baking! And decorating things that have been baked! And interesting facts and stories tied to things that have been baked, and things that decorate the baked things!
Up next, a cookie parade.