Oh, bananas. You seem like such a good idea when I'm at the store. I buy three or four of you. But then you languish on that hook for a week until I find it hard to look at you. If I'm on the ball, you end up in banana bread or perhaps these muffins from Nigella's How to Be a Domestic Goddess. They're fast, easy, they will relieve you of two revolting-looking bananas, and they are even better when you toss in a handful of chocolate chips (is there anything they don't improve?).
Sidebar: as a high school teacher, I've known many students with after school jobs at grocery stores. I always like to ask them questions, such as:
Q: When you're bagging a teacher's groceries, are you also quietly judging us?
Q: What's an example of a teacher's food that you have quietly judged?
A: One time Teacher X came in and bought like 12 boxes of Wheat Thins. And I was like, 'What is she doing with all of these Wheat Thins??'
Q: Do you judge all adults equally, or do you pay special attention to teachers?
A: We pay special attention to teachers. [This is why I never shop where my students work. -- K]
Q: What is the most popular item in the store?
A: Bananas. [It is ALWAYS bananas. -- K]
Q: What is the least popular item in the store?
A: We have this half gallon jar of mustard that's been there for years.
And now, the recipe.
- 2 T butter
- 1/4 C honey
- 1/2 t vanilla
- 2 large, very ripe bananas
- 1 C flour
- 1 heaping teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 t baking soda
- 1/2 t cinnamon
- healthy pinch salt
- healthy handful of chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375.
Put the butter, honey, and vanilla in a pan on low heat to melt, then remove and set aside for a few minutes.
Mash the bananas and, in another bowl, measure the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Mix the melted butter mixture with the bananas and then mix that and the chocolate chips into the dry ingredients. Don't overmix; you will have a not terribly attractive lumply sludge, but don't worry about it.
Put paper cups in the muffin trays (this makes 10 regular muffins or 24 mini muffins). Fill them 2/3 full of the mixture. Insert a few extra chips on top of ugly muffins to beautify. Put in the oven and bake for 15 minutes--check them at this point; my regular-sized muffins were nearly done and needed only a couple of extra minutes, and I'd assume that mini muffins would take even less time. Nigella recommended baking these for 25 minutes, but I do not enjoy burnt muffins, do you? Her timings can be way off base for me, but maybe that is because British ovens are strange, who knows?
Leave in the pans for 5 minutes (I didn't), then remove the muffins in their cups to a wire rack for another 5-10 or until cool.
And since you probably did not click on my banana link above, here it is. You only need to watch the first minute and a half if you dislike Chris Elliot (as Jeff does). I highly encourage you to perform this dance as you wait for your muffins to bake.