No faff food… recipes tested in a real kitchen

17 Apr 2012 @ 4.28 pm
| Food & drink
Mia in charge of muffin quality control

Oaty Banana Muffins

When my kids come home from school, they’re usually so hungry they could eat the welcome mat. And while there’s probably more nutritionally beneficial healthy stuff in our dirt-slaked hessian rectangle than the average shop-bought after-school treat, it’s still not an ideal kid-filler.

So we – Mia, the eight-year-old, and myself – thought we’d give these oaty banana muffins a whirl as an alternative healthy treat. And if they turned out wrong, at least we’d have something new to wipe our feet on.


1 egg
½ pint buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
4oz oats
2 mashed bananas
2 tbs vegetable oil
4oz caster sugar
4oz wholewheat flour
8oz plain flour
1 tsp bicarb
2 tsp baking powder


  • Pre-heat your oven to 180.
  • Mix the first seven ingredients in one bowl, and the last four in another.
  • Combine them all together and mix quickly with a fork (don’t worry about lumps – lumps are good).
  • Fill 12 muffin cases (in a 12-hole muffin tray) about ¾ full.
  • Chuck the tray in the oven for about 20 minutes.
  • Prod a muffin with a cocktail stick – if there’s mixture stuck to it, bang them back in for another five minutes; if it’s clean, let the muffins cool in the tray for five minutes.
  • Remove them from the tray and let them cool completely on a wire rack.


Our verdict

We particularly liked the fact that lumps were good in this recipe because most of the things we cook have lumps in them anyway. It also fitted in nicely with our general kitchen laziness that stirring was kept to a bare minimum and over enthusiastic spoon action was actively frowned on.

We dutifully filled our muffin cases to three-quarters full, but found we had loads of mixture left over. In retrospect, we probably should have made 16 muffins, but we didn’t; we bunged all the mixture in one tray and made 12 monster muffins instead.

It was the first time we had cooked with buttermilk, but it seemed to work fine (Mia dutifully dipped her finger in it and deemed it very “yogurty”).

Perhaps because they were such behemoths, our muffins needed longer than the specified 20 minutes in the oven. And if we’re being absolutely frank, they were still a bit doughy, despite passing the cocktail stick test.

But they were delicious, with just the right balance of creamy banana to chewy oats.

Mia’s verdict? “They turned out very big, but they were really tasty.”