Thursday, October 11, 2012

Midnight Muffin Madness V

Round 5 of Midnight Muffin Madness and we're over halfway home!  This week it's Banana Nut Crunch Muffins.  Moist banana nut muffins with a crunchy banana streusel topping.  My DH was making excuses to stay home today to keep them all to himself, but wisdom prevailed and he took the muffins and headed off.

Okay, I might have suggested that there was absolutely no way he was going to eat all of those muffins by himself after I stayed up until the wee hours of the night making them and he had best get to gettin' them out the door and into Other People's tummies before I took them and handed them out on the train.

Anyway... on to the muffins!

The wet:  4 large bananas very ripe, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, 2/3 cup melted butter (cooled), 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract and 1/2 cup buttermilk.  Plus for the topping:  4 Tablespoons brown sugar, 2 Tablespoons butter.

The dry:  3 cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon netmug, 1 cup chopped walnuts.  Plus for the topping:  4 Tablespoons flour, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 cup crushed banana chips.

Measure out your dry ingredients and whisk them together.  Make sure to coat all of the chopped bits of walnut with the flour mixture so they float in the batter.

Mash up 3 of the 4 bananas.  I use a potato masher for this.  I was thinking that I would use a fork - like with guacamole, but I wanted the banana pieces to be a little more substantial than a fork would give me.  I chopped up the 4th banana into 1/4-inch pieces for an extra banana boost in the bite.  Yum!

Lightly beat the eggs.  My girlfriend always asks what this means, so...  Just beat them until they are broken up and mixed a bit.  They'll still have streaks of white in them and they won't be frothy.

Add the vanilla.  I used clear vanilla even though the recipe has brown sugar in it so I could have used the brown vanilla.  But I used the clear anyway.

Add the rest of the wet ingredients - sugar, brown sugar, egg, vanilla, bananas - and then pour in the buttermilk.

Then pour in the cooled melted butter and mix it up.  The butter will start to re-solidify because the buttermilk is cold.  That's why you want the butter to be cooled - and also so you're not pouring hot butter into beaten eggs.  You don't want scrambled eggs in your muffins.  (Unless you do, then feel free.  I guess.)

Take a minute now to get your topping together.  Measure out the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and butter into a bowl.  Then crush the banana chips.  I just used the bottom of a measuring cup to crush them up.  They should be a little chunky, but not too much.  Maybe about 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch pieces.  Toss that in with the rest of the topping ingredients and mash together with a fork until it's a sand-like-esque consistency.  Well, as sand like as it can get considering there are chunks of banana chips in it.

Add the mixed wet ingredients to the whisked dry ingredients and give it a quick stir.  This muffin batter it more on the stew consistency side.  It's a bit loose.  This made me want to stir it extra in order to really make sure everything was well incorporated.  But don't!  Over-stirring leads to hockey pucks.  Trust me on this.

Scoop a healthy amount into the lined muffin tin - until it's about 1/4-inch from the top of the tin.  Don't worry if you see little bits of flour here and there - it will all work out when it bakes.

Sprinkle the topping around the outside edge of the muffin.  Enough will fall into the middle of the muffin to coat it without there being too much on the middle of the muffin to keep it from rising.

Bake at 350-degrees for 25-30 minutes.  In my over it took 27 minutes for them to come out a golden brown banana goodness.

Place them on a cooling rack and let them cool for as long as you can keep your DH and your pup away from them.

And there you have it!  Midnight Muffin Madness V - Banana Nut Crunch Muffins.

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