Monday, March 11, 2013

Banana Muffins

We have been on a bit of a muffin kick lately...

Matthew loves to help "cook" in the kitchen. He is getting to the point where his presence in the kitchen is actually very useful. For example, he loves to help me unload the dishwasher. With all of the lower back pain I have been having, it has been amazing having a three-foot-tall munchkin hand me the plates, bowls, and dishes from the lower rack so I do not have to bend down to retrieve them. The same is true with cooking. He now knows how to properly whisk both dry and wet ingredients for baking, enabling me to simply dump ingredients into a bowl and let him go at it while I prepare the other components.

Since today was unseasonably warm, Matthew and I went for a long walk in the morning. On our way back home, it began to drizzle, so we quickly hurried inside before we got too wet. We stood at the window and watched the rain fall for just a bit before Matthew turned to me and asked: "Mommy...make muffins?" Rainy days are normally wonderful opportunities to bake, so I agreed.

Ignore the snowman muffin liners in the background. They were all I had!

These muffins have been in our recipe arsenal for over three years now and I cannot believe I have not yet shared them on here. Matthew and I make them often since he loves anything with banana and we normally have a few overripe ones laying around just waiting to be turned into banana bread, cake, or pancakes. These muffins are perfectly moist, sweet, and light. You could add a cream cheese frosting to be really fancy, but really their homey simplicity is perfectly appealing.

Banana Muffins
adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 ripe bananas, peeled and coarsely mashed

Line 18-muffin cups with paper liners. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl to blend. Beat the sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl to blend. Stir in the banana. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the banana mixture. Fold/stir just until blended.

Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. Bake the muffins on the middle rack until the tops are golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean (about 20-25 minutes). Transfer the muffins to a rack and cool slightly before carefully removing from the tin.

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