My favorite thing to bring to new moms is food. I figure that by the time I get there, the baby clothes cuteness is wearing a bit thin and a hot dinner is more welcome than another pink onesie. Although, I do have to admit that the charm of pink onesies cannot be denied.
I looked through my cookbooks for just the right thing to make, and when I came across these muffins, I knew that this was "it." Everyone likes banana muffins, and the poppy seeds give them an interesting twist that keeps the bit of crunch without making me worry about nut allergies. The addition of whole wheat flour and four bananas keep them on the healthier side, hearty enough for breakfast or just a snack while still moist and delicious. Lastly, I was attracted to the fact that, if wrapped individually, these muffins can be thrown into the freezer - a quick reheat in the microwave or toaster oven and you have a freshly baked muffin anytime you want. I might just be tempted to make another dozen or two for myself!
Banana-Poppy Seed Muffins
from my favorite cookbook of the moment, Once Upon a Tart (it's wonderful, seriously)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1/2 cup of sugar
4 very ripe bananas, mashed (the authors emphasize that the bananas must be very ripe, even black)
2 large eggs
1/4 cup cold milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 400F and butter or spray 12 regular or 6 extra large muffin cups.
Whisk the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt and poppy seeds together in a medium bowl.
In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the mashed bananas and continue mixing on high until the bananas are blended in completely. Lower the speed to low and mix in the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated (about a minute), and then mix in the milk and the vanilla.
Gradually add in the dry ingredients just until the flour disappears - do not overmix.
Divide the batter among the muffin cups and bake for 30-40 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
To freeze, allow muffins to cool to room temperature. Then wrap each individually in two layers of plastic wrap. Alternatively, set the unwrapped muffins on a tray and freeze for an hour or so (flash freeze), and then store in a freezer-safe ziplock bag. As far as I can tell, they will keep for about 2 months. Continued after the jump...