If you’ve read any of my blog posts from our family holiday to Brittany, you probably won’t be surprised to hear all our jeans are a little (or a lot) tighter now we’re back. It happens. It’s fine. It was worth it. We’ll just be extra healthy for a few days and it’ll all balance out, thought I. Then I got home to find a bunch of over-ripe bananas sitting unloved in the fruit bowl. And we know what over-ripe bananas call for, don’t we? BAKING, of course. So, I decided to make a pretty-good-for-you-in-the-scheme-of-baking batch of muffins, so as not to derail our healthy eating intentions. Not too much, anyway. These babies are made with sustaining, slow-release-energy wholemeal flour, oil instead of butter and relatively little sugar thanks to all the luscious sweetness from the banana – that’s why you need reeeaaally ripe, brown, speckly bananas. Said bananas also ensure moistness.
The muffins are also home to healthy-but-scrummy raisins and pecans, which adds interest to the texture and complements the banana and cinnamon perfectly, in my esteemed opinion. (If you were feeling more indulgent you could add some cheeky chocolate chips though.) Quite frankly, I think the flavour combo makes these muffins just parfait for breakfast. But obviously they’d be delicious at any other time of day. And c’mon, there are oats on tops. Anything oaty has got to be good for you, right? Oh, and I once read that cinnamon boosts your metabolism, so that’s nice. My favourite part of a muffin is the muffin top, so with that in mind I always fill my muffin cases relatively well. Doing so, this recipe made 11 sweet, yummy, moist muffins of yumness.I made them late at night (hence the less than great light in the pictures) for breakfast-to-go on the next day’s early morning road trip. It was VERY hard not to devour them fresh from the oven. That banana-y baking smell is just irresistible.
150g wholemeal flour
100g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
100g dark muscovado sugar
25g chopped pecan nuts (I actually just break them with my fingers)
25g sultanas or raisins
3 big or 4 small very ripe bananas, mashed
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tbsp milk
100ml sunflower oil
a sprinkling of oats
1. Heat the oven to 180C and line 11 holes of a muffin tin with paper cases. Sift the flours, baking powder and cinnamon into a large bowl and stir in the sugar, nuts and raisins – make sure no lumps of sugar are left.
2. Add the banana, eggs, oil and milk and fold in quickly with a large metal spoon – don’t overmix (it should be lumpy) otherwise the muffins will have a tough texture.
3. Divide the mixture between muffin tins. Fill them just about to the top, sprinkle on a few oats and bake for 20 minutes. Leave to cool for ten minutes in the tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. If you can wait that long, that is.