Blueberries. Funny to think that in the UK these were quite an unknown quantity several years ago. I remember in my teenage years being obsessed with making blueberry muffins – I heard about them all the time on TV, but you couldn’t get them for love nor money in the 80’s - well in North East Scotland anyway! I remember my mum and I going for a day trip through to Edinburgh and going into the food hall in Jenners. There I found a tin of blueberries in syrup. I was well chuffed, even though they were extortionate (If you know Jenners, you won’t be surprised). And the funny thing is, I cannot even remember the muffins I might have made with them. But of course blueberries are everywhere now. I love them and they are such a versatile ingredient.
The other week I was having a look around the baking section in TK Maxx and came across a cute square muffin pan. I picked it up, thinking it would be a good buy, but not for anything inparticular. Then this week, I had some ripe bananas left over and I saw that my beloved blueberries were on special at the supermarket. And it hit me – why not make banana bread, which I love, but cross it with blueberry muffins. The square tin would be perfect, although not necessary if you would like to embark on this delicious concoction…
Banana Bread Blueberry Muffins
Yield: approx 15 medium sized muffins
3 ripe bananas
150 grams fresh blueberries
250 grams granulated sugar
120ml vegetable oil
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
250 grams of plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of Salt
Preheat your oven to 180oC and line or grease a muffin pan.
In a bowl sift together the flour, bicarb, cinnamon and salt. Set aside. In another bowl, mash the bananas down with a fork, add the sugar and vegetable oil and mix until combined. Next add the eggs one at a time, incorporating each one fully into the mix. Stir in the vanilla and then add the flour mixture. Combine until no streaks of flour can be seen, but try not to over beat as you don’t want tough muffins. Add the blueberries and gently fold into the batter.
Next, fill your muffin cases two-thirds full with the batter. Pop your tray into the oven for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the centre clean. Allow to cool and remove each muffin from the pan.
These are fine on their own, but I added a final flourish with some icing on top. For the icing recipe click here.
These muffins are delicious eaten cold or warmed up. The unmistakable taste of banana bread is there, albeit in muffin form with the gentle hit of cinnamon, and with the unexpected pop of the blueberries. A firm favourite, these keep for a few days in an airtight container. Enjoy…