We both love banana’s but they come under the categories of expensive and luxury; and just thinking of the ‘food miles’ makes me cringe so for the most part now they are one of the sacrifices to our new lifestyle.
But occasionally you find bananas on the reduced for quick sale shelf in the grocery store. Which is where we found bags of about a dozen, very ripe, bananas for $1! Which takes them off the expensive list. They were also organic which makes me feel a little less bad about the food miles; and being on the reduced shelf – now this may sound silly – makes me feel like we aren’t encouraging the ‘banana industry’ so much as making sure nothing goes to waste.
Anyway we bought 2 bags, and I decided that rather than the normal banana bread I would try something new ……
Mocha Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins
- 1 cup butter
- 1 1/4 cups white sugar
- 1 egg
- 3 ripe bananas
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon instant espresso coffee (or regular instant coffee powder)
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Blend butter, sugar, egg, banana, and vanilla. Dissolve the coffee powder in the water and add to the butter mix. Add flour, salt, baking powder and soda, and blend until flour disappears. Stir in chocolate chips. Spoon mixture into 15 to 18 paper-lined muffin cups.
- Bake for 25 minutes. Cool on wire racks.
So the first time I doubled the recipe as I had so many bananas and because I don’t like putting half trays in the oven! But I did something REALLY stupid. I put two trays on the middle shelf, and one on the top. The stupid is that my oven really isn’t big enough for this so the heat being generated at the bottom couldn’t circulate properly and resulted in two trays with very burnt bottoms and one try that slightly undercooked! But the results were not that bad considering.
A second attempt was necessary. I didn’t have enough white sugar so I used a mix of white and brown, and I doubled the coffee powder as the first batch you couldn’t taste it. The coffee still wasn’t noticeable – at first – but now at about 5 days old (kept in an air tight container), they are still good and the chocolate chips have a distinctly mocha taste to them.
I discovered a couple of great muffin tips – for good, high, rounded crowns you shouldn’t fill the muffin cups too full – only 1/2 to 3/4 full is best, and using an ice cream scoop makes for nice, even distribution of batter. Meaning that my second doubled recipe filled 4 trays – 48 muffins!