Sunday, June 19, 2011

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Who would have ever thought that a slight change in baking and the addition of a crumb topping could make the same muffin batter look so completely different. I was so surprised when the second batch of muffins came out looking so golden brown with a crunchy top. I began to think of the pale ones as representing the great Pacific Northwest where most are a pasty white, and the darker ones as representing Southern California where many are golden brown and crispy.

This recipe is actually similar to a banana bread recipe and it makes muffins that are very dense. You could weigh these puppies on a scale and they would definitely register. For the first batch of muffins, I baked them in cupcake liners and I chose to bake them naked with no crumb topping. They tasted great, like a slice of chocolate chip banana bread in muffin form. For the second batch I ran out of cupcake liners so I just baked them right in the muffin pan and I added the crumb topping. Holy cow! These were incredible. The naked ones make a great healthier muffin but if you want something with pizazz then the crumb topping is the way to go. Enjoy!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins 
Makes about one dozen muffins

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large)
1 large egg
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Crumb Topping (optional):
4 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/4 cup packed brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare your muffin pan (either line with liners or spray with oil).

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

Mix mashed bananas, egg, melted butter, and milk in a medium bowl. Stir banana mixture into dry ingredients just until blended (do not over mix). Stir in chocolate chips.

Optional Topping:
Mix ingredients together and crumble on top of muffins before cooking. Just a little bit does it. Use judgment as to how wet or dry you want the crumbly top. More wet, less flour; drier crumbs, more flour.

Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 full. Bake 25-30 minutes or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.