Four bananas going south… cannot eat anymore as two already downed… don’t like to waste food either… what is a girl to do?
Make some banana muffins, of course! Especially when she is in need of some interesting breakfast stuff.
And that is how it started. But then, isn’t it too tame to go ahead and make some regular run of the mill muffins? Why not add some different stuff to make it a bit more interesting? That is the path I took. And the end result? Well worth the effort… a healthier, tastier set of muffins!
So I went around assembling the ingredients… the bananas are very sweet; so what is a fruit that is not so sweet? Dried plums! They do have a good texture too.
And now for some colour… what better than glazed cherries for colour? And some walnuts for crunch. Last item… a pinch of orange zest. Nothing invokes that sunny morning feeling like the flavour of oranges!
With the ingredients assembled, the rest was easy. As easy as beat’em, chop’em, blend’em… beat the liquid stuff, chop the fruits and nuts…
And blend everything together!
When the muffins came out of the oven, they were looking so good I felt it is a shame not to give them a topping… at least some of them.
So I made a quick topping with a bit of cream cheese and a dash of mascarpone. They are sufficiently sweet, so just a spoonful of honey to sweeten just the topping.
A sliver of glazed cherry to garnish, and you got a winner!
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp nutmeg powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 4 very ripe bananas
- 1 cup dried plums
- ½ cup glazed red cherries
- ¾ cup walnuts
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- Preheat the oven to 325 degree fahrenheit.
- Prepare muffin pans with paper liners. The quantity mentioned will get you 20 muffins; so you could either use two muffin pans, or bake them in two batches.
- Mix the flour with baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg and salt. Keep aside.
- Toast the walnuts in a hot pan for 3 minutes and let cool. Chop the walnuts into a rough chop, each walnut being cut into not more than two or three pieces.
- Mash two of the bananas coarsely so that lumps remain.
- Chop the dried plums and glazed cherries coarsely.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, using an electric beater.
- Add the sugar and continue beating till the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Add the remaining two bananas and beat them into the egg-sugar mixture.
- Add the oil and vanilla extract and beat to mix thoroughly.
- Using a spatula, mix the lumpily mashed bananas into the mix.
- Now add the chopped ingredients – dried plums, glazed cherries, walnuts – and the orange zest, one by one, mixing well after each addition to form the batter.
- Add half the flour mixture into the batter and gently blend in.
- When all the flour is mixed in, add the remaining flour and continue blending till smooth. Do not beat the batter at this stage or over blend.
- Using a large spoon, drop the batter into the prepared muffin pans till each cup is ¾ full.
- Place the pan into the heated oven.
- Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, till the muffins have risen well and the top is golden brown. At this stage, a skewer inserted into the center of a muffin will come out clean.
- Remove from the oven and place individual muffins on a rack to cool.
- If you would like to add a topping, mix together 3 tablespoons of cream cheese with 2 tablespoons of mascarpone cheese. Sweeten just enough with honey and spread on top of the muffins.