Banana-Zucchini Muffins with Blueberries
|November 21, 2011||Posted by Cheeks under Breadmaking, Breakfast, Make-ahead|
Back when it was still summer, and we still were struggling with what to do with copious zucchini (not to mention the over-ripe bananas I always seem to have lying around) I came up with this recipe for Banana-Zucchini Muffins.
Alas, it is not summer anymore. Where did the time go? Oh, yes, that’s right. I spent over two weeks in South America with my love, celebrating our one year wedding anniversary with an indescribable honeymoon to Machupicchu, Cusco, Lima, and Rapanui (Easter Island). We climbed mountains, drove ATVs across deserted islands, scuba dove (well, half of us did, as this half was banned from the water due to a sinus cold) and drank enough Cusqueno to fill a hot tub.
The food was an adventure, too. Andean cheese – tangy and creamy, great in a hard roll for breakfast or melted on a pizza; alpaca – gamey and light, sort of like venison; tacu tacu, a strange fried mishmash of rice and lima beans; “rape rape,” the polynesian/rapanuian name for langostinos, or little lobster-like crustaceans plucked from the middle of the Pacific; Chicha, the native Andean drink of fermented corn; so much fresh fish and ceviche, and so much more. The only thing I didn’t try was Cuy – yes, guinea pig – I just couldn’t bring myself to order the little rodent, which is served whole with teeth, claws, and all. Another time.
Following up el Honeymoon-o with a weeklong work trip, several out-of-town friend visits, and some other of life’s concerns meant that I rarely cooked over the last month. Forgive, friends, forgive. For I am back now, and ready to welcome in winter the best way I know how – by eating myself into a winter coat of chub. Back to the muffins…
Still, they are indeed delicious, and adaptable too. I bet you could sub in shredded apple, Fall and Winter’s favorite storage fruit, for the zucchini with great results. Even applesauce would work in a pinch – the moisture, texture, and fiber is what we’re going for here. A scoop of wheat germ would amp up the healthfulness, too, if you are so inclined. And if not, a buttery, nutty streusel topping would taste pretty, pretty, pretty good too.
Banana-Zucchini Bread with Raisins (or other dried fruit)
Yield: 1 loaf or about 12 muffins
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (can substitute whole wheat flour for up to half)
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ stick of butter or margarine, softened
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup very ripe bananas, mashed (about 2 bananas)
- 1 cup shredded zucchini
- ¾ cup raisins, dried blueberries, or dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a loaf pan or, alternatively, line a muffin tin with liners.
Mix flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl; stir well and set aside.
Using a stand or hand-held mixer, cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla; continue to beat until pale yellow and creamy.
Turn the mixer to low (or switch to a spatula) and add half the mashed bananas and ½ the zucchini. Mix well. Add half the flour and mix until just combined. Repeat with remaining banana/zucchini and remaining flour. When the last of the flour is mostly incorporated, stir in the raisins. Continue to stir until just all the flour is incorporated, but try not to over-mix. (The batter is on the stiff side – more scoop-able than pourable.)
Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan/muffin tin. If using the former, spread the batter evenly to the corners and smooth the top.
Bake loaf for 45-55 minutes, or until browned on top and a tester comes out mostly clean with a few crumbs. Bake muffins for 25-35 minutes, or until they pass the same test.