It has been nearly two years since I scribbled the words "banana bread cinnamon rolls" across my ever-growing recipe idea list.Read More
Muffin Mondays. Can we make that a thing?
We have had some extra chilly mornings recently and I find myself wanting to simply curl up with an endless cup of tea and a generous supply of muffins and tea cakes.
Have I ever mentioned how much I adore carbs? Oh yes, it would seem that I have. I really do love them.
While I did give my dining table a spring-ready makeover, I am holding onto these blustery mornings and cozy afternoons with all my might. Every season has its charms and I am learning to appreciate them more and more rather than forever looking to what's next.
I think banana bread was one of the first things I started baking on my own. Back in the days where I had to break out the step-ladder to reach the baking soda, I produced not a few loaves of banana bread that my brother and I then devoured as soon as the timer signaled - "done!"
Banana bread will forever be one of the greatest and coziest of foods.
I had a bunch of bananas that I had bought for Mr. Pedantic's breakfasts but since he's been a bit under the weather lately they were left to become brown, and soft, and justtttt right for baking into deliciously moist muffins.
Now, you must refrain from going to buy a bunch of bananas just for these muffins. I have done that many a time and, 1. they will never ripen, and 2., you will probably suddenly discover that you adore bananas and eat them all before the first brown spot has appeared.
Just go about your normal business, and buy a bunch with more than your husband will be able to eat. Then, when your back is turned, they will do their ripening thing.
Sometimes you have to trick your produce into compliance.
Because I cannot have a muffin without a topping, I made a super-sugary streusel with slivered almonds.
I've been trying to replace regular ol' white sugar with pure cane sugar and I swear it is not as sweet, but I love the texture of the coarse granules.
You will never find a perfect, not-overfilled muffin tin in my kitchen. I used to call it a problem, but now I'm going with the slightly more elegant title of "signature."
I toted a bunch of these still-warm muffins up to our apartment office as a Valentine's Day treat.
Handy men, receptionists, and Mr. Pedantic all agreed that these muffins were the perfect weekday pick-me-up.
Now, make that second cup of tea and start ignoring those yellow bananas. We have got this week in the bag. Carb power forever and ever.
Banana Almond Streusel Muffins
makes 18 / recipe loosely adapted from Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook
for the streusel
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup raw or pure cane sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, whisk to combine flour, sugar, and baking powder. Add butter cubes and use your finger tips to work the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Toss in silvered almonds and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate the streusel while you prepare the muffin batter.
for the batter
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups mashed, ripe bananas (about 3 medium)
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup pure cane sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a large bowl, whisk to combine eggs, bananas, oil, vanilla extract, and sugar. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, sift to combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and whisk until smooth, but do not beat.
Spray muffin tins with nonstick spray and divide the batter evenly amongst 18 cups. Sprinkle each muffin with about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the prepared streusel.
Bake for 20 minutes - until the edges are golden and a butterknife inserted in the center of the muffin comes out clean. The streusel make look underdone, but it will set as the muffins cool. Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
I am not completely sure when it was that my mother first fed me banana bread, but I know that I have been in love with it ever since. I cannot be trusted alone with a loaf of freshly baked banana bread. I’m serious. I can, and will eat the whole loaf, and likely polish off 3/4 of a stick of butter in the process.
If my brother and I are together? Gone. All of it. Yes, we did just buy all the bananas within a ten mile radius, bake 47 loaves of bread, eat every last one of them by ourselves. It’s how we bond. If you need us, we will be found sleeping on the kitchen floor in a beautiful banana bread coma.
What I am trying to say is that I really, really, really like banana bread.
In my mind, banana bread is breakfast fare. I like to enjoy a warm slice or two with a big cup of coffee. The only challenge is, I often lack the patience to wait an entire hour for my breakfast to bake.
By the time I crawl out of bed and mosey out to the kitchen I can only wait about 23 minutes for food to enter my mouth. Here lies my quandary. Sure, I could bake it the night before, but that would not necessarily guarantee banana bread for breakfast. The lateness of hour by no means lessens my ability to devour.
So, I have to get my banana bread fix in a slightly more timely manner. Hello pancakes!
These pancakes were the first thing I made in my shiny new Ninja blender. Pancakes are always the first thing people make when they get a new blender, right? Okay, maybe not, but they should be.
I have long loved my Ninja blender, so I was more than delighted to take their new Auto iQ model for a test run. Though I loved my former, more basic model, I do not know that I could go back to it after using the Nutri Ninja and all its fancy buttons. It not only serves as a blender, but also as a food processor, giving you extra room in your pantry by cutting down on your appliances.
Besides saving dishes, making pancakes in a blender also aerates the batter, which in turn, leads to fluffy pancakes. For this recipe, I took advantage of the new Smooth Boost setting and it created a perfectly smooth batter without overworking it and making the pancakes tough.
The batter is relatively standard. Ripe bananas are pureed first using the Smooth Boost setting to make them extra creamy. Then they are combined with eggs, butter, vanilla, and milk.
I let the blender do all the work here and she did a fantastic job. The best part? You still only have one dish to clean. Well yes, the measuring cups, but just work with me here.
My particular model comes with two different work bowls as well as two single serving pitchers. I used the Blend and Prep Bowl for this recipe. I was skeptical in the beginning, and I doubted that it would be able to replace my beloved food processor, but it did the job wonderfully. If you can only afford one extra appliance, I would certainly recommend this tool because it can serve as both a blender and a food processor and does both jobs wonderfully well.
As I said before, I have always slathered my banana bread with a generous dose of butter, and I had no intention of treating these pancakes any differently. However, I wanted to jazz my butter up a bit with pecans, brown sugar, and vanilla extract.
Oh yes, I did all of this in the blender too. While the pancakes were cooking, I rinsed out the work bowl and made the butter.
A couple of pulses later, you are ready to slather some pancakes with spoonfuls of sweet, nutty butter.
Here we are. At the end of another week, and ready to forge some meaningful moments. Let’s begin well.
This post was in partnership with Ninja Kitchen. As always, all opinions expressed were completely my own. I just happen to be pretty mad about their products.
Banana Bread Pancakes with Brown Sugar Pecan Butter
serves 2-4, depending on your appetite
for the butter
- 2/3 cup raw pecans
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
Add raw pecans to the Blend and Prep bowl fitted with the Chopping Blade, or in the work bowl of your food processor. Pulse several times, until finely chopped. Add brown sugar, vanilla, and butter. Pulse until smooth, scraping down the sides with a spatula as needed. When the butter is smooth, transfer to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to use.
for the pancakes
- 1 large banana
- 8 ounces whole milk
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 10 ounces all purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- softened butter, for frying
Sift to combine all purpose flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside.
In the Ninja Blend and Prep bowl fitted with the chopping blade, or the work bowl your food processor, add 1 banana. Blend until smooth. Add whole milk, eggs, butter, and vanilla extract and pulse several times to combine.
Add flour mixture and blend on high for 1-2 minutes, until a smooth batter has formed.
Place a large frying pan over medium heat and coat with a small amount of butter. Pour about 1/4-1/3 cup(depending on the size of your pan) of batter into the frying pan and cook until the batter has bubbled and all the bubbles have popped. Flip the pancake with an offset spatula and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Continue with the remainder of the batter.
To serve, butter each pancake with the prepared brown sugar pecan butter and drizzle with maple syrup. Top with pecans and sliced bananas, if you feel so inclined. Enjoy!