A return to basics, or at least an attempt

Bananas. What to do about the bananas was the question, because if I knew one thing, they had to go.

Okay. To start at the beginning we had an infestation of fruit flies. Not that fruit flies are anything I’m not accustomed to – ask anyone who ever had a locker next to mine in middle or high school – but the truth was I was sick of them buzzing about the kitchen, and I knew why they were there.

Bananas.

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The bananas were at the most perfect (perhaps perfect in this case is an opinion, I understand some – very strange – people like them when they are closer to green) stage of almost completely brown. So soft and sweet they melted in your mouth, but also mushed at the bottom of your fruit bowl and attracted all the fruit flies to your kitchen. And that part was the problem.

“They have to go,” I said to absolutely nobody.

But go into what?

My first thought was ice cream. Maybe it was the heat, but why not? I could make banana ice cream. Then I remembered I was severely lactose intolerant, and although at times I chose to ignore that fact, now was probably not a good time.

“So not ice cream,” I said, out loud, again. But what? Banana…Banana…Banana bread! “Of course!”

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The first recipe I ever made (besides chocolate chip cookies of course), in my first ever cookbook was tropical banana bread. It had been months since I made it, so why not? A return to basics to solve my banana problem.

A return to basics, however, proved a little more difficult than I anticipated.

Creaming the butter went smoothly enough, and we did have eggs (no need for quick vegetable oil or flaxseed substitutions), and of course we had bananas – that was why I was doing this after all. The flour, however, was where I began to run into problems. I had already forgone the orange peel because I truly hate graters and I didn’t even bother looking for coconut, but whole wheat flour? I had been sure we would have some.

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My hand mixer holds a special place in my heart, especially when it does this.

All-purpose, all-purpose bleached, all-purpose…three bags of flour later, but none of them whole wheat. For a moment I considered going to the store, but then I decided to just do a little improving.

I threw in a little less than 2 cups of all-purpose flour, a little less than 2 teaspoons of baking soda (because we didn’t have any baking powder) and half a bag of chocolate chips in for good measure.

 

I tried a lick of the batter – definitely not the flavor I was used to, but good all the same. Okay, the oven was preheated and now just time to find the pan…

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“We don’t have any loaf pans? Really?” I emptied nearly three cabinets – plenty of brownie pans (go figure, it’s my favorite dessert), no lack of pots, and an odd amount of muffin tins. I stood back up and stared at my very pale batter.

“You’re already not bread,” I told it. “So why not muffins? It is the summer of muffins after all.”

So maybe I hadn’t returned to basics – or at least not the basics I was trying to – but I had created something delicious, a banana chocolate chip muffin recipe that was definitely worth repeating.

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Makes 10 muffins:

  1. 2 large over ripe bananas (no need for them to be attracting flies, but it’s okay if they are)
  2. 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  3. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  4. 1/2 cup of butter
  5. 2/3 cup of sugar
  6. 2 large eggs
  7. 1 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. preheat oven to 350F
  2. beat the butter and sugar together with a mixer until blended
  3. add the eggs and continue mixing
  4. add the bananas (keep mixing)
  5. add the flour and baking soda
  6. stir in the chocolate chips
  7. thoroughly spray (i mean the sides and the bottom) a muffin tray
  8. fill the compartments as much as possible
  9. bake for 30 minutes or until the edges and top begin to brown
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I am completely responsible for eating that muffin top.

 

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