Monday, June 04, 2007

So... This is how I study

Bananas. I know, they aren't exactly a fruit I should be proud of loving - for environmental and political reasons. While supposedly they're cleaning up their act, banana growers don't exactly have the best reputation. They harm biodiversity, use pesticides that kill the rain forest and those who work around them...
Not to mention UFCo, and their bananas, led to the CIA intervening in a decent government and replacing it with none other than an oppressive one. Those problems still aren't resolved...

However, those little potassium powerhouses are perfect for baked goods... and I'll admit, I put them in almost everything. Not to mention they go great in cereal when they're almost ripe, and as they get riper, oatmeal, and then overripe- puree or mash them and toss them into just about anything where they can hide or dominate.

I even keep some in the freezer from times when I've bought them but had other fruits around to eat. I'm not going to throw out bananas that have so much left in them.

While banana bread is no longer at its peak of popularity, I can totally see why it was. Though I'm much more of a muffin girl, the first scratch-made muffins I made were banana-nut. Though I usually make banana-wheat with chocolate chips because its fun to have a treat every once in a while with chocolate in the muffins.

Banana-Wheat Muffins
makes 10-12 muffins
Adapted from Vegetarian Times, March 2006
I think they are tastier using hand chopped bittersweet chocolate instead of the mini-chocolate chips because it has a smoother texture. If I don't have enough bananas once they're all mashed, I also sometimes top it off with applesauce (you lose some flavor though).

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1 tsp. baking power
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (2 to 4 ripe bananas)
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup wheat bran
3 Tablespoons oil, such as walnut oil
1 large egg white
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/3 cup (50 g) miniature chocolate chips
a handful or two of walnuts, if desired

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease 12 muffin tin cups.

Combine flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
Combine bananas, buttermilk, sugar, wheat bran, oil, egg white and vanilla in a medium bowl; stir until blended.
Add banana mixture to flour mixture and stir just until moist. Add chocolate chips and stir until distributed.
Divide batter among prepared cups (I use a #12 scoop). Top with walnuts, if desired. Bake 13-17 minutes, or until golden brown and spring back when touched in center. Remove from pan and cool.

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