Sunday, May 11, 2014

Buttermilk Banana Walnut Muffins for a Crowd!

Cooling on my King Arthur Flour
folding rack! A favorite kitchen tool!
First of all, before it's over, I'd like to wish a Happy Mother's Day to my readers. Whether or not we are moms, we all have or had a mother and this day is significant. So, I hope that you had happy times or happy memories of time with your mom (as I do). Mine was a lovely Mother's Day, spent with some of my kiddos and also with my two little grandsons as we visited their great-grandmother, Mary Lou Eddy. My own beautiful mother has been gone for 12 years this spring, and that awareness has me cherish those too-rare moments I get to spend with Mary Lou. It's wonderful that she's been able to nurture three generations of children, all of whom adore her. I am forever grateful that she's been a part of my life for over 40 years. She is a wonderful woman.

When we visited, Henry (six years old) had very exciting news to share with "Grammy" Eddy - he's lost his first tooth, just last night! He was very proud to show his great-grandma this recent development. It is a big deal in his young life!

So, beyond little lost teeth, what else is new? Well, I didn't bake today - I gave myself the day off! My daughter Katie baked enough for both of us with an incredibly delicious Cooks Country lemon pound cake (I found it posted on Chowhound.com) she served with a mixed berry compote for dessert tonight, along with a strawberry/mango shortcake. I had the lemon pound cake but had to pass on a 2nd dessert (!). Anyway, after baking a LOT for the past few days, I welcomed the day off after keeping my kitchen in over-drive! Katie's husband Bill brought in dinner, again this year from Augie's in Ballston Spa. They make a dish called "the kitchen sink" which is a penne pasta in a creamy tomato sauce with chicken, shrimp, and sliced sausage. There was a container of spaghetti with marinara, and four meatballs the size of my fist which we divided up. It was a great dinner, and the fact that we didn't have to prepare it was a bonus!

It was great that my kitchen (and I!) had the day off! But, when my kitchen is busy, it's VERY busy! I don't usually bake in small quantities. Most of the time, I make batches by the dozens. This recipe for Buttermilk Banana Walnut Muffins is one that I make in large quantities all the time. The buttermilk ensures a light, tender muffin with a high rise. Chopped walnuts inside and sprinkled on top add a nice nuttiness and as well as a healthy boost. With half the sugar compared to other muffin recipes, this muffin is sweet enough when paired with ripe, mashed bananas. It also freezes very well so go ahead and make a big batch, take some to work, give some away, and keep some out for a great start to your day or as a not-so-guilty snack during the day!

BUTTERMILK BANANA WALNUT MUFFINS
Makes 24 (half the recipe for one dozen)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Farenheit. Get two big bowls out.
Spray muffin tins with cooking spray or line with paper liners

Ingredients:
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
4 teaspoons (or 1 tablespoon plus one teaspoon) baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

4 bananas
2 cups buttermilk (or, 4 tablespoons vinegar plus enough milk to make two cups total, let sit for 5 minutes)
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup melted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup chopped walnuts plus more for sprinkling on top.

Directions:
In large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In another large mixing bowl, mash four bananas. I do this with a whisk attachment. To the mashed banana in the bowl, add and mix in buttermilk, beaten eggs, melted butter, and vanilla.

Pour liquid banana mixture into dry ingredients in the other bowl. With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold wet and dry ingredients together until all dry particles have been incorporated and there are no more pockets of the flour mixture. Fold in walnuts.

With an ice cream scoop or 1/4 cup measure, drop batter into prepared muffin pans. Sprinkle top of batter in muffin tins with crushed walnuts (see photo). Bake for about 20 minutes or until tops are dry and bounce back when pressed lightly.

Cool in pans on wire rack for about 20 minutes. Remove from pan and allow to cool completely.


3 comments:

  1. Catherine GoldenMay 12, 2014 at 10:23 PM

    Your muffins are always a treat, Jeanne. My mother still talks about them. Happy Mother's Day to you, a wonderful mother and grandmother.

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  2. Nothing like the smell of fresh muffins baking in the oven--especially banana!! I can almost smell the vanilla and butter now. The hard part is do you let them cool...or eat them when they are warm right out of the oven. Hmmmm.... :)

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  3. Banana muffins are one of my personal favorites ! These sound great,can smell them now ! We also had an Auggie's mothers day.....including an order of The Kitchen sink...Chase had his first taste of pasta...he loved it. CKJ

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