Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Banana Gingerbread Muffins

Today's baking will be killing two birds with one stone: Christmas party baking & re-stocking the freezer.

Last night I put the last of the frozen baking in the little miss' lunchbox. I really like keeping a stock of home-made muffins or pikelets in the freezer for when I have to throw a school lunch together quickly or for the day before grocery shopping when we're getting low on everything else. So I was looking for something that I could put out for the Christmas party (in case there are guests who would like to nibble on something that's not chocolate or candy!) but that would also be eaten by my daughter in her lunches. The little miss generally likes banana muffins, and she loves ginger & cinnamon so I figured these banana gingerbread muffins ticked that box, but would also fit in with the Christmas theme due to the added spices. This recipe was totally not on my baking list - nor even pinned to my Pinterest boards before this morning, I was actually searching on gingerbread muffins and was weeding out the ones that required ingredients not currently in my cupboards, and when I saw this one it just ticked all the boxes.

Of course I didn't have any molasses in the cupboard (a major ingredient in gingerbread, I know) but the research I did after my peanut brittle baking indicated that I could use golden syrup in exchange for the molasses - although substituting brown sugar was recommended to give it a stronger taste. So I used slightly less golden syrup than the amount of molasses stated and slightly more brown sugar. I also added a little extra of the spices as that was also suggested in something I read about the substitutions. I made them in mini muffin trays because the size works better as party nibbles than a loaf or big muffins, and they work better in my kids lunches. The recipe states to leave them in the oven for 20-25 minutes for muffins, so I checked mine after 16 minutes and they were perfect!

My mini muffins actually turned out really well. They don't taste Christmassy at all, as the banana is the main flavour, but the are moist & delicious none the less. Depending on how things go, I may top them with a little bit of crystallized ginger & a sprinkle of cinnamon to tart them up a bit for the party (the lunchbox ones will stay as is).

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