There was a time a few years ago, right around when I started this blog, that I thought baking was an ordeal. It just seemed like a big time commitment that always ended in a lot of dishes and overeating. I started baking a little bit when I finished university and felt like I was conquering the world every time. Real women bake, you see. It’s a sign of how feminine you are. God put us on this planet to have children and bake. I’m sure someone famous said that once.
My attitude towards baking has really changed over the years. I love baking now. It makes me happy and I know it makes Karl happy when I make something he likes. With it just being the two of us I really need to watch how much I bake because baked goods are my kryptonite. Baked goods and hot drinks are a match made in heaven. Baked goods and hot drinks and good books are even better. Baked goods and hot drinks and good company are the same. Baked goods and cold drinks too, for that matter. I just think baked goods go with everything, okay?
Since I can’t have dairy it’s a lot harder for me to have a baked good when I go out for coffee. This is probably one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Not only am I a baked good fiend but I love the stuff that is just terrible for you. Doughnuts? A thousand times yes. Scones with icing? Yes please, especially the ones from Starbucks. Cookies? Anytime anywhere. Cinnamon buns? The gooier the better. I just adore baked goods. It’s a good thing that most places don’t have a lot of options for someone like me. It’s also why I bake. Why search the world looking for the dairy-free baked good that may not exist? I’m no pastry chef, but I do okay in my own kitchen.
One thing I find that I always make better than any commercial seller is muffins. You know how grocery store pies never even come close to the homemade kind? That’s how I feel about muffins. If a muffin is made anywhere other than someone’s personal kitchen it just isn’t up to snuff. I think the problem is that everyone focusses so much on oil in their muffin recipes. Oily muffins are always such a letdown. If I wanted something that oily I would have ordered a cheese croissant. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating for dry muffins, I just think there needs to be a happy balance. And that balance is always homemade.
So now that I’ve told you all how superior homemade muffins are I’m going to put my money where my mouth is and share with you my favourite muffin recipe. It’s not my own original recipe, but I’ve tweaked it a little. I got it from a couple friends of mine so I like think of it as the Robertson Banana Chocolate Chip Muffin recipe. It’s everything I look for in a muffin. Not oily, not too sweet, and full of bananas and chocolate chips. I try to avoid muffin recipes that call for more than half a cup of sugar. I like to get my sweetness from chocolate chips, not the rest of the muffin. Plus, bananas are good for you. Didn’t you know that?
3 large mashed bananas
½ cup coconut sugar
1/3 cup applesauce
1 ½ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
Chocolate chips to taste
Mix wet ingredients together.
Add dry ingredients.
Add chocolate chips.
Spoon into greased muffin tins.
Bake at 375° for 16-20 minutes.
Makes 12 big muffins.
So easy. So good. I’m even eating one right now.
The original recipe calls for regular sugar and oil instead of applesauce. Coconut sugar doesn’t translate super well into everything, but I find it’s fine with muffins and loafs. And at this point I think you know how I feel about oil. The only time I don’t swap out oil for applesauce while baking is when I’m making cookies or something I’m not totally familiar with.
I forgot to do it this time, but one of the last times I made this recipe I used ½ whole wheat flour and 1 cup of white and you couldn’t even tell. I’ve also added chia seeds, cocoa powder, coconut, cranberries, and flax seed at various times over the years. If you’re feeling really daring, I think you could even add a little bit of dissolved instant coffee in there to give them a real kick. Or in my case, decaffeinated flutter.
The world is your muffin oyster.