Last week was full-on summer. Hot, sweaty temperatures outside so that meant we turned on our fans, went on a lot of evening bike rides and hung out on the balcony to drink beers. Not too shabby, mid-September! But this morning was a different story. Outside our window, the mountains disappeared into the fog and we closed our windows because of the chill. It was the nudge I needed to get me into the kitchen. As soon as I drank my morning coffee, I was off to make a gingerbread granola and a batch of these delicious muffins.
I was looking for a vegan muffin since we have some guests staying with us from the UK and the recipe from Gwyneth Paltrow’s new cookbook seemed promising. Lucky for all of us, it was. The recipe calls for gluten-free flour, but I just used all purpose since it was the only flour I had on-hand. I decided to bump up the nutritional value with some wheat bran tossed in. It worked out well.
Maple syrup and dates sweeten the recipe – but dang it, I only had half the amount of maple syrup (the real stuff here) so I made up the rest with molasseses. And let’s face it, I upped the date factor to about 3/4 of a cup worth because dates are good. And maybe because of all my playing around, I found the muffins a bit sweet – next time I’ll cut the sweetener by a quarter cup or so.
So, next time you’ve got a hankering for a delicious morning muffin – something to stave off the autumn chill, make a batch of these. An ideal way to enjoy a foggy weekend morning.
vegan banana and date muffins
(adapted from It’s All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great)
1 3/4 c all purpose or whole wheat flour (or you could use 2 c gluten-free flour instead, skipping the additional wheat bran)
1/4 c wheat bran (if you don’t have any, just use additional flour)
2 t baking powder
2 t baking soda
1/8 t sea salt
2 large or 3 small ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 c coconut oil, melted (or use extra virgin olive oil)
1/3 c maple syrup
1/3 c molasses
2/3 c almond milk
1 t vanilla extract
1/2 – 3/4 c dates, pitted and chopped
1/2 c walnuts or pumpkin seeds, roughly chopped
Preheat oven to 400F.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, wheat bran (if using), baking powder, baking soda and sea salt together. In another large bowl, combine the bananas, oil, maple syrup, molasses, almond milk and vanilla together. Add in almost all but 1/4 cup of the flour mixture and blend slowly. Add the chopped walnuts and dates into the remaining flour mixture and toss until everything is coated. Pour into the batter and blend until just mixed.
Grease muffin tins and dollop batter into tins, 3/4’s full. Bake for 18 minutes, or a bit longer if using bigger muffin tins. Test with a bamboo skewer to check doneness. Tops will be golden brown. Makes about 15 regular sized muffins and probably 12 large ones.