Blueberry Cornbread Muffins
Rainy days call for some indoor activities and one that has captivated Little Boy Green for some time is baking. He can bake anything, toy cars, puzzle pieces, magnetic alphabet letters, popped balloons, plastic coins, and anything that his little brother is engulfed in and he can snatch away from him (VERY poor manners, as Mrs Green points out to him. He seems to think maternal admonishment is a small price to pay for displaying his big-brotherly power.) All the odd bits of homeware, toys and sticky things go into a large mixing bowl and end up scattered all over our home, where they are baked under pillows, in shoes, drawers, plant pots and down his brother’s shirt.
I have attempted to materialise these great aspirations of his into food we can imbibe and digest. He likes Pizza, but the process bores him of late, it takes too long. Banana Bread is a winner, but we’ve done it so many times recently that now he’s bored of it.
So after searching the internet and several cook books we decided on these muffins as the next big baking project. The recipes that we found contained flaxseed, applesauce or both. These two ingredients are great egg replacers, but we thought that it would be good to use something that is a little more accessible, an overripe banana. There are times that a banana won’t cut it for us as it can overpower other flavours, but in this recipe it goes unnoticed.
We also used apple cider vinegar (although I imagine most vinegars would work, bar balsamic) which curdles the milk to create a plant based buttermilk as well as activating the baking soda.
The ingredients in this recipe are household staples, polenta gets served up to the small culinary conservative in our midst several times a week and blueberries make it into our morning porridge. Our breakfast consists of frozen berries, but for this recipe I recommend fresh blueberries which happen to be in season at the moment (and in our weekly fruit box). Frozen berries, at least the kind that we use, tend to be very soft and break up when mixed into the batter, resulting in almost brownish muffins. The fresh on the other hand, are more robust and the finished muffins are yellow with bursts of moist blueberries.
So if you are wondering what do with Thing One and Thing Two when stuck indoors, or if you would just like to whip up something nice for the four o’clock tea, then give these a go. Eat as many as necessary to feel satisfied and think of me, fervently praying that it will not be long before they are both asleep.
Ingredients: (12-24 muffins
- 1 cup Cornmeal (we used polenta)
- 1 cup Blueberries
- 1 cup Wholemeal flour (we used wholewheat)
- 1 cup Non-dairy milk (we used soya)
- 1 Medium size overripe banana
- 2 tbsp Apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
- 2 tbsp Oil (we used olive)
- 2 tbsp Maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- 1/2 tsp Baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Mix the milk with the vinegar or lemon juice and let stand while you measure and prepare remaining ingredients.
- In a mixing bowl add all dry ingredients (corn meal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt) and mix to combine and then add the blueberries.
- In a separate bowl, mash the banana with the maple syrup, vanilla extract and oil.
- Pour the curdled milk mixture into the banana mash and mix well.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently mix into a batter.
- Spoon the batter into cupcake moulds and bake for 15-20 min. depending on size of moulds. A toothpick should come out dry when inserted.