Sunday, March 24, 2013

Chocolate Chip and Banana Muffins

Easter is sneaking up on us very early this year. One can't even be fooled by the weather into thinking Easter is near, given that Spring still appears undecided about exactly when it will make an appearance. I know it's going to be Easter soon, though, since Easter treats are everywhere I look. Mostly the tiny packaged chocolate kind (Easter - it's the new Halloween!).

Given that Easter is next week it's clearly time once again for hot cross buns. It's difficult when the majority of your household loves hot cross buns but one lone (but still very important) individual does not. He doesn't get the least bit excited when the the kitchen takes on a yeasty, cinnamon-scented perfume. The drizzle of icing that frosts the buns with neat little crosses also ceases to excite him in the way it does the rest of us. Knowing that he wouldn't be interested in the ritual of the first hot cross buns of Spring I decided to make Patrick his own special treat to enjoy - Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins.

These are really good muffins. Really, really good muffins. They are a recipe from Food and Wine, more specifically from a chef named Grace Parisi. You know that you spend too much time looking for recipes when you recognize the chef's name. Grace Parisi is also to be thanked for Maple-Soy Snack Mix, which we enjoy by the bucketful during the Christmas season. But try not to get distracted because Grace Parisi definitely knows her way around a Chocolate Chip Banana Muffin. These muffins are tender and moist. The banana to chocolate ratio is perfect. They are definitely best warmed up, but I also had one at room temperature and enjoyed it every bit as much. Patrick happily munched away on one while the rest of us tucked in to hot cross buns this morning at breakfast. So no one felt left out this morning.

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

  1. 1 1/2 cups sugar
  2. 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
  3. 2 cups mashed overripe bananas (about 6)
  4. 3 large eggs
  5. 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  6. 2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  7. 1 teaspoon salt
  8. 1 cup mini chocolate chips (6 ounces)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° and line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper or foil liners. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, melted butter, bananas and eggs; mix thoroughly. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until the batter is evenly moistened. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  2. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Bake for about 28 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out with a few moist crumbs attached. Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes before turning them out onto a rack to cool completely.
MAKE AHEAD The banana muffins can be wrapped in plastic and frozen for up to 1 month. Let thaw and toast in a 350° oven.

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