I cringe everytime I toss a rotten vegetable or moldy leftovers into the trash. So when I realized my bananas were almost beyond overripe, I wound up crafting this little muffin to avoid throwing them out. I adapted it from a “banana muffin” recipe from a local cookbook. Little did my Mom know that years ago (before my oldest brother was born) that a little Underhill, VT cookbook would mean something else. I am now keeper of the cookbook and flip through it regularly to spark some ideas. I made two batches of these muffins. In the first, I mixed in a cup of our stash of local frozen blueberries and in the second, some black caps picked from my parents new land in Belvidere, VT.
Photo Credit: Ithica Post. GREAT article about the perfect summer-ness of black caps!
Black caps, also known as black raspberries, are deliciously seedy and perfectly tart and are found growing wild in giant patches all around our region. I will admit that they are kind of a pain (kind of, being an understatement)… a labor of love, if you will. They are much smaller than their raspberry cousin on a plant full of tiny thorns that tear you up as you pick. They have become an addiction though, once I start picking, I can’t stop! Usually I dive right into a 6 foot tall, densely packed, thicket and pop out the other end an hour later covered in hundreds of tiny, burning scrapes with only a few cups to show. They also do not last long once picked. Almost immediately they should be washed, dried on a towel, and used within a day or two. They are prone to little worms, like baby inch-worms (not sure what they are). I found that if I fill up the sink with berries and water, the little wormies sink and the berries float. After all the labor and pain it took to pick them, boy it makes them taste that much better. And if a few worms were still in there, its just protein… right??
I can honestly say these muffins are amazing and with only 1 stick of butter and 3/4 cups sugar per batch, they aren’t too bad for you either! I never pack my brown sugar, so mine proably ended up with less than 3/4 cup, and resulted in a slightly sweet treat. I like my sweets not very sweet… if that makes sense.
Banana Berry Muffins
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2-3 banana’s)
3/4 cups brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 stick of butter (melted)
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup fruit
(blueberries, black caps, raspberries, or strawberries would be good!)
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, mashed banana, and melted butter.
In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda and powder, salt, and cinnamon. Add this to the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Fold in the fruit.
Pour into lined muffin tins just a hair below the rim (cooking spray can be used instead of muffin liners). This recipe should make 12 regular sized muffins (my first batch made 12 regular and 4 mini muffins). Bake for 20-25 minutes.