Ina Garten created famous Banana Crunch Muffins for her East Hampton specialty food store. She then published the recipe in The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. Below is my adaptation. The original certainly does NOT need to be changed; I altered it simply because I lacked all the correct ingredients. The original calls for whole milk (which I never have in the house) and sweetened shredded coconut (also never in my house). Instead I used a flavored coffee creamer (always in my house) and LOVED the results. I also altered the flour and sugars since I prefer healthier, more natural blends. The results were so good Rick didn’t even notice the whole wheat flour. (If you knew my husband, you would understand how astonishing that is.) So, here’s my twist on the Barefoot Contessa classic.
Banana Crunch Muffins (Tanya Style)
- 3 c flour (I mix my flour: half whole wheat and half all-purpose.)
- 2 c sugar (I mix my sugar: 1 part raw and 2 parts granulated.)
- 2 t baking powder
- 1 t baking soda
- 1/2 t salt
- 1/2 pound butter, melted and cooled
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 c flavored creamer (I used “White Chocolate Coconut” by International Delight. DELISH!!)
- 2 t vanilla extract
- 3 very ripe bananas: mash 2 of them, dice the 3rd.
- 1 c walnuts, chopped
- 1 c granola, plus extra for sprinkling on top (I used a “vanilla crunch” blend.)
Preheat the over to 350’F. Line two large-muffin pans with paper liners or spray with non-stick baking spray.
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl (preferably your electric mixer — when finished, the batter filled my 6 qt KitchenAid). Add the melted butter and blend. Combine the eggs, creamer, vanilla and mashed banans in a separate bowl, then add this mixture to the flour-and-butter mixture. Scrape the bowl (it’s pretty sticky) and blend well, but not too much.
Fold in the diced banans, walnuts, and granola. Spoon the batter into muffin wells, filling each to the top. Sprinkle with extra granola.
Bake for 28-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool slightly, then enjoy.