if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?

March 21, 2009 at 2:25 am | Posted in food | 1 Comment
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why change a great thing? well, if no one ever did, how would we have things that are greater than great? fantastic even? you gotta take that risk.

if i do say so myself, i make some freakin’ awesome banana muffins. i use tyler florence’s recipe for the ultimate banana bread, obviously making changes like substituting the pecans for chocolate chips and making them in muffin form rather than a loaf.

the bananas i bought last weekend went ripe ridiculously fast for my liking (i had to stop eating them around wednesday because i like my bananas yellow with a tinge of green), so by friday, it was high time for action in the kitchen. last night i decided i wanted something a little different – something tropical. so i went about throwing caution to the wind and making crazy substitutions left and right. i was heavily rewarded this morning with a muffin cup of deliciousness.

Here is tyler’s recipe, with my changes in brackets

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (i used 1.5 c flour and 0.5 cups unsweetened coconut)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 overripe bananas (i used 5 because that’s what i needed to get rid of)
  • 1 cup sugar (i always cut this down to 2/3)
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled (i only put in 1/3 of the butter, for the rest of the fat, i used some cream cheese i needed to get rid of and the balance in coconut butter)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (skipped)
  • 1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped (instead, i chopped up several rings of pineapple that i dehydrated this week)

I love how Tyler whips the bananas. I’m not a big fan of mashing things and I truly believe that the whipping with the sugar makes all the difference in the excellent muffin texture. He says to whip half, mash half for texture (banana chunks?) but I always just whip all.

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan.
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  • Mash 2 of the bananas with a fork in a small bowl so they still have a bit of texture. With an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk, whip the remaining bananas and sugar together for a good 3 minutes; you want a light and fluffy banana cream. Add the melted butter, eggs, and vanilla; beat well and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Mix in the dry ingredients just until incorporated; no need to overly blend. Fold in the nuts and the mashed bananas with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Give the pan a good rap on the counter to get any air bubbles out.
  • Bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Don’t get nervous if the banana bread develops a crack down the center of the loaf; that’s no mistake, it’s typical. Rotate the pan periodically to ensure even browning.
  • Cool the bread in the pan for 10 minutes or so, and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.


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