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The Many Lessons Of My Favourite Banana Muffin Recipe

The Many Lessons Of My Favourite Banana Muffin Recipe

I love baking. It makes me feel warm, safe and cozy.

I can get a little out of hand when it comes to baking and have a mountain of baked goods threatening to take over the kitchen. A girl can only eat so much, but not to worry. she will try! And her two small hooligans have no limit to what they can consume.

Since getting back on my feet and my new found love of spare time I only bake once a week now. Muffins and cookies are done on Monday. And if they're all eaten up before another Monday comes along then so be it. We go without. Shocking, I know.

My oldest has always been keen to get up first thing in the morning and do his own thing for a while. Since he could toddle his way out of the bed he spends early mornings reading and playing. Often the sound of LEGO block searching  gets me up.

Lately though, he's been into foraging first thing and the sound of the cookie jar lid at 6:45am often wakes me up.

My way to combat this behaviour, rather than get myself out of bed, is to just make cookies and muffins so chock full of goodness they pass for "pre-breakfast" and this mom can sleep on.

This recipe is based on one I found in an issue of Cook's Illustrated magazine (one of my all time favourite cooking magazines). The hooligans love to make them and each takes over either the dry or the wet section of the recipe and I help them both. Messy, delicious chaos.

This is a very reliable recipe and I have made some near-fatal mistakes. It's nice to know that there's a lot of leeway for me to mess things up.

The muffins turned out great when I left out the sugar. They turned out great when I left them on the counter for 20 minutes before the oven was ready (NOTE: Muffins actually like a rest before going into the oven. Try it sometime). They turned out great with the addition of all kinds of additions or just straight up bananas. They did not turn out great whenIi forgot the flour. I shouldn't have been in the kitchen that day.

And we use silicone muffin cups. If you love baking and muffins I highly recomment getting a set of cups. You can use them over and over and over again!

As we are all so comfortable with this recipe now, it's also afforded us the opportunity to be able to count our muffin making as a homeschooling lesson. Even if you're not homeschooling, baking with your kids is full of connecting and learning time.

Opportunities for learning are everywhere and I find the more we do the same old things the more the kids actually get out of it themselves.

Lessons From Muffins include all kinds of chit chats about:

  • Fractions as we're measuring (math)
  • The difference between imperial and metric measurements (math)
  • Where the ingredients come from (geography),
  • What is happening as the muffins are waiting to go into the oven (science),
  • What is was like when momma was a baker (career planning/avoiding)
  • The nutrients found in the ingredients and how they effect our body (self care and science)
  • Are muffins a good snack for space travel.
  • Dould we make a LEGO trailer to deliver muffins to us in bed.

I hope these muffins work all kinds of magic for you, too. Let me know if you have any questions.

MY FAVOURITE MAGIC BANANA MUFFINS

Set oven to 425C and line 18-24 muffin cups.

1. Mix the DRY ingredients together in a bowl:

1 1/2 cups flour (I use a light whole wheat but the recipe works with white all-purpose or any combo of whole wheat and white flour)
1 TBSP baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

2. Mix the WET ingredients in another bowl

4-5 mushy bananas (the key is the bananas MUST be soft with at least a few brown spots on the skin), mashed well, should yield 2 cups
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup oil (I use olive, just cause it's what I have)
2 tsp vanilla

3. ADD WET TO DRY and add any special additions. I usually add one nut/seed butter and one extra, but the recipe has worked with peanut butter, chocolate chips and coconut, for example. 

1/3 cup peanut butter, almond butter or tahini

1/3 cup shredded coconut, hemp seeds, chopped walnuts

1/3 cup chocolate chips (I love to chop up one of our favourite organic, fair trade chocolate bars into rough chunks), dried cranberries, goji berries

4. Fill muffin cups 2/3's full and OPTIONAL let them sit on counter for 15-20 mins.

5. Bake muffins for 14-18 mins. Remove from muffin pan and let cool before eating or throwing in the freezer.

 Bon Apetit!

Jenn Chic

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