It’s hard to know when would be the best time to eat these wonderful muffins. Certainly, for breakfast, but they make a mighty fine dessert or snack as well. I tested out this recipe last weekend because I plan to make them for an Easter Bake sale. Muffins are always great with coffee on Easter morning, when you know there will be a big meal sometime later in the day.
When I was a teenager our youth group always got up really early to attend an Easter sunrise service. At that hour of the morning, it was quite chilly outside, so when the service was over we always went to someone’s house or back to church for hot chocolate and whatever other goodies were provided. Moving and beautiful as the service was, I always looked forward to the refreshments that followed. These muffins are the essential accessory to a hot beverage, and would be perfect served at an early morning function, or maybe an early meeting at the office.
These are sturdy muffins chock full of flaked coconut, chocolate chips, and nuts if you care to add them. The tropical taste of the coconut blends beautifully with the banana flavor and develops the batter along the way; the inclusion of chocolate chips is a necessity for those individuals who require chocolate in every bite of muffin.
What makes the texture of these banana muffins somewhat cake-like and soft is the process by which the batter is assembled: the butter and brown sugar are creamed together until fluffy and smooth. This builds the batter’s creamy quality and prepares the mixture for the addition of the whole eggs. Once the eggs are added, the flavoring extract and the mashed bananas are incorporated, followed by the final mix-in of the dry ingredients and enough buttermilk to moisten the whole. The batter is now ready to accept the shredded coconut, mini chips and nuts.
Spooned into lined muffin cups and baked, the batter bakes up into plump muffins that have lovely rounded tops. When you break open a warm muffin, you’ll find a tender, moist, “crumb” holding chocolate chips and coconut, all wrapped by the taste of banana. Sigh!!
BANANA CHIP MUFFINS
Yield: 12 muffins
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1 cup white whole wheat and 1 cup regular flour.)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons ( 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large bananas)
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup flaked coconut
- 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips ( I used mini chips.)
1. Preheat the oven to 375*F. Line 12 muffin cups (3-ounce size) with paper liners, or grease lightly.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and the brown sugar for about 2 minutes, until light and fluffy.
3. Beat in the eggs to incorporate, add in the banana and vanilla. The mixture may look curdled. Add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, continuing to mix just to combine.
4. Reserve 2 tablespoons chocolate chips. Add the rest of the chips, the coconut, and nuts, (if using) to the batter and stir in to distribute evenly.
5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle the tops with the reserved chocolate chips. Bake 25 – 30 minutes until a toothpick into the center of one muffin comes out clean.
6. Remove the muffin tin to a wire rack. Cool the muffins in the pan for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the cups and finish cooling on the rack. Serve warm or cool completely and store the muffins in an airtight container at room temperature.
SOURCE: Chocolatier Magazine