God forbid I ever call my husband muffin or vice versa. We have our fair share of nicknames and cheesiness – but names like muffin or pumpkin are really not us, unless we are in a mocking type of mood. In addition to no cheesy nicknames my husband and I are not much for desserts (I can hear the gasps and see the eyes rolling). That is not to say we do not have our indulgences, it just does not take the form of a slice of cake or wedge of pie. Rather we both enjoy savoury dishes with a well paired wine or beer. Of course as a women there are times when chocolate is my best friend, and I'd kill to get it. But generally speaking it is not something I eat. Consequently when it comes to Valentine’s Day chocolate or desserts are typically things we do not indulge in.
Instead of a dessert I decided to make something we could have as an afternoon snack that we could take with us while we checked out Ottawa’s Winterlude festivities. I decided on some simple banana-bran muffins (nothing says V-Day like bran :) ) to go with a thermos of coffee & Kahlua. What makes these banana muffins special is that they are sealed with a chocolate kiss. Yes Yes I know after that rant on no chocolate, I use chocolate to cook.
Banana Bran Muffins with a Kiss
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 bananas, mashed
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat bran
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease a muffin pan or line with paper muffin liners.
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and brown sugar together until fluffy. Add bananas, milk, vanilla and eggs; mix well. Stir in flour, bran, baking powder, soda and salt; blend just until moistened. Stir in walnuts. Pour batter into prepared muffin cups.
Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in the cups for 5 minutes, and then remove muffins and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
If using mini muffin pans, bake for 12 minutes or again until a toothpick inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean.
It made 9 large muffins and 7-8 mini muffins (I filled them almost fill, usually best to fill 3/4 of the way). Could also cover the kiss entirely with more batter so it is a surprise kiss.
Happy St. Valentine's Day!