American Staples Baking Breakfast & Brunch

Blueberry & Banana Muffins, February 2014

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February 2nd, and Dublin has changed from winter to spring: people are out and about again, the mutually-reinforcing grimness of January seems to have finally – finally – passed and, with the return of the Six Nations, weekends have a new and welcome sense of occasion again. After a week of overdosing on Super Bowl snack suggestions online, I decided I wanted to make something nice to nibble at while watching Ireland v Scotland this afternoon. But chips and eight-layer tortilla dip and blue cheese buffalo wings don’t work so well at 3pm (or indeed in Ireland generally), so I made blueberry and banana muffins with a coconut topping instead. Light, fruity and dotted throughout with the most cheering shade of blueberry, they were lovely at half-time with a steaming cup of tea.

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BLUEBERRY & BANANA MUFFINS

2 cups plain flour

2tsp baking powder

1/4tsp salt

1.5 cups of fresh blueberries

1 ripe banana

3/4 cup caster sugar

2 eggs, beaten

1/2 a cup of butter, melted and cooled

1/2 cup whole milk

1/2tsp vanilla extract

2tbsp desiccated coconut

1tbsp granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 190 degrees c. Sieve the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt) into a large bowl. Beat the eggs and whisk with the sugar, melted butter, mashed banana, vanilla extract and milk. Fold the wet mix into the dry mix ever so gently, leaving lumps if needs be. Spoon the mixture into muffin cases or press 5-inch parchment squares into an oiled muffin tin. Sprinkle the mix with the desiccated coconut and bake for about 25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Sprinkle the granulated sugar onto them as you take them out of the oven. Cool on a wire tray.

For a sweeter, more exotic bite, make some syrup with lime juice and caster sugar. Glaze the muffins with the syrup and dunk them into a saucer of toasted coconut shards.

PS: I’ve recently discovered that M&S sells lovely folded muffin papers (like the ones I’ve made above) in its larger stores

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