The only thing that could possibly make banana muffins even more delicious? Adding peanut butter and chocolate.
Today’s the day! The inaugural College Football Playoffs starts with match ups between Oregon and Florida State and more importantly Ohio State and Alabama! As my friend Christina put it so well, I’m quivering with excitement and anticipation. I hope Ohio State makes the Big Ten proud. With 10 of the 14 teams in the conference going into bowl games, every single one is listed as the underdog and there have already been upsets. Then before our game begins today, Wisconsin will be taking on Auburn, Michigan State plays Baylor, and Minnesota plays Missouri. It’s a big day for the Big Ten conference!
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All of this (f)unemployment gives me plenty of time to not only apply for jobs, workout, and cook, but also to keep track of food holidays. Priorities, right? Today happens to be National Banana Bread Day so for Single Serving Sunday I made a mini loaf of banana bread. One small banana is all you need and it is first caramelized before being mashed and mixed into the batter along with some chopped walnuts. The richer flavors of this mini loaf produced by the caramelization may have you wishing for a full-sized one.
I don’t buy or bake bread products often so when I crave a breakfast sandwich, it gets bit tricky unless I have something stashed away in the freezer. But then I saw this recipe for a 90 second English muffin and breakfast cravings were satisfied! This English muffin is prepared in the microwave and is truly ready in just 90 seconds. From there, spread it with peanut butter or stuffed it with egg, cheese, and bacon like I did. Part of a complete breakfast.
In other news, I’ve been visiting my friend Becky this weekend who lives in the Nashville area. I haven’t seen her in a year! Last time I saw her she was about to be shipped over to Afghanistan, but now she’s back! I’m not sure who needed this visitation more, me or her? But either way, to finish off our weekend we are running the Color Run today. I ran one last year in Memphis and it was fun, so I’m looking forward to doing it again.
One year ago: Chocolate Peanut Butter 7-Layer Bars
I may be busy as all get out, but I wasn’t going to miss out on participating in Secret Recipe Club this month. I probably should have taken the month off, but here I am anyway. This month I was assigned to Enriching Your Kid! by Shirley. Her blog is geared towards parents looking for ways to enrich their children by strengthening their immunity and facilitating their growth. But if you are like me and do not have children, the recipes are still great for expanding your knowledge about healthy foods. I plan to try out her Chocolate-Date Compound Butter in the future, and almost made the Chicken Corn Kebabs, but decided on a muffin recipe instead for today because it involved Nutella!
The original recipes had a dollop of Nutella in the middle of the muffin, but I forgot to only pour half the batter into the muffin pan in order to accomplish that so I just made a swirl on top. They might not have a Nutella-center but they certainly tasted as good as they looked. I loved that the recipe uses olive oil instead of a lot of butter or canola oil, and my taste buds were completely fooled. And with whole wheat flour and bananas in addition to the Nutella, there’s really no way to go wrong with one of these for breakfast, or a snack.
I feel like my baking rate has gone down significantly, which is likely due to trying not have as many sweets lying about to tempt me. But when I saw these skinny cupcakes on Sally’s Baking Addiction, I knew they were destined to be made in my oven. After all, I never miss an opportunity for some peanut butter and chocolate lovin’. However, even thought they are titled as “cupcakes” I actually ate them more often in the morning than as a dessert. So they can either be a treatful breakfast, or a healthier dessert.
When it comes to brown bananas (unlike the yellow ones in the background of the image below), muffins are the most frequent utilization. So I decided to pump up the health factor of my all-time favorite muffins, Banana Peanut Butter Cup Muffins. I used a butter substitute, reduced the sugar and used brown + natural sweetener instead of all white sugar, traded the egg for flax, used ground oats in place of some of the flour, dark chocolate instead of the mini peanut butter cups, and finished it off with a crumbly oat topping instead of coarse sugar. I kind of miss the peanut butter, but I can solve that be spreading some on while I eat it O:-).
Every holiday comes with it’s own blend of specialty candies. However, it always seems like fall has the best variations. Even though I don’t favor Milky Way candy bars normally, when I saw this season’s caramel apple version I had to pick them up. But it took until now to figure out what to make with these fun treats. Why not stuff them into cinnamon rolls?
I wasn’t fully convinced on the apple flavor of the candies when I tried one by itself, so I went ahead and added in some real apple into the rolls as well. And then topped them off with a caramel glaze. It may still be reaching into 80 degree weather here, but it certainly tastes like fall with these cinnamon roll cupcakes.
While making these, I was almost certain I had killed the yeast with milk that was too hot, because it didn’t look like it was rising much. In the end they came out just fine! I really enjoyed these as individually portioned cupcakes too, but you could easily throw them all into a pan together like traditional cinnamon rolls. Also, I halved these from the original recipe, so feel free to double it back for a larger crowd!