Saturday, July 3, 2010

Blueberry Coffee Cake Muffins and Banana Bread

Sorry for the delay again. Our hard drive crashed and we had to buy a new computer. Daniel and I have been so busy with work that we just didn't get around to it until this week. I felt so disconnected with the world! Anyway, we're back!

I may have been neglecting my writing, but I've definitely not been slacking in the kitchen-I've got a few recipes to share now! Last weekend we had a cookout for my in-laws' 25th Wedding Anniversary and had a few leftovers. My pantry is also stuffed to the gills for some reason, so last week I refrained from buying any groceries except for yogurt, milk, fruits, and vegetables. We had chicken, roast, and home-made pizza. Nothing special (and we spent 10 bucks)! Thus, I've got baking recipes this week.
The first is for some awesome banana bread (Just for the Barcus ladies out there!!). I am obsessed with fresh fruits and vegetables and always pack Daniel 3 servings in his lunch every day =) Somehow, though, we always end up with 2 rotten bananas. Voila- Banana Bread!

Just an FYI- baking is a pretty exact science most of the time, depending on what ingredients you're talking about. Fats, sugars, leaveners, and flour need to be measured properly and precisely. Everything you use should be room-temp, even eggs. Things like spices and sometimes extracts can be fudged a little. As a rule of thumb, I always double or more the amount of cinnamon a recipes calls for and add nutmeg (both of which I don't really measure) and add more vanilla. As long as you don't make more liquid than necessary in the batter, you should be fine. It makes it extra yummy!!

No picture for this one, but it's pretty self explanatory!

Banana Bread

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream
2 bananas, "rotten"
Cinnamon and Sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan. Sprinkle inside with cinnamon and sugar.
2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla, mix well. Add in bananas, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix well. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in separate bowl. Stir together and add to batter, mixing slowly. Finally, fold in the sour cream. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.
3. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool loaf in the pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Store in refrigerator overnight-it will make it super dense and moist!

TIP- Always always always bake for shorter than a recipe calls for. This original recipe #1 had no cinnamon or nutmeg (shame!) and #2 said to bake for 60 minutes. I baked it for 40 and kept checking. You can always bake it longer after checking, but you are at a loss if you go too long. The heat from the pan and inside the bread will help it to set a little more even after it comes out of the oven. As long as your toothpick is clean, take it out! This cook-time rule goes for cookies and cake as well!

Blueberry Coffee Cake Muffins
These are the BEST muffins you will ever eat in your life. Amazing! Yield-About 21 muffins

  • 1 1/2 sticks butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces (about 1 cup) sour cream
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pint fresh blueberries (more if you LOVE them, like me!)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place paper liners in muffin pans.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs 1 at a time, then add the vanilla, sour cream, and milk. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low speed add the flour mixture to the batter and beat until just mixed. Fold in the blueberries with a spatula and be sure the batter is completely mixed.

Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin pans, filling each cup just over the top, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes (WHICH REALLY MEANS 20 MINUTES, THEN CHECK IT!), until the muffins are lightly browned on top and a cake tester comes out clean.

*You can make a streusel topping if you wish and put it on before baking, but these muffins are so good the way they are. Also, blueberries are super cheap right now since they are in season, but if you're making this in the fall or winter you can use frozen. KEEP THEM FROZEN, flour them, and toss them into the batter. They WILL bleed, but that's okay. They still taste the same!


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