I think there are a lot of things in this world that don’t receive the credit that they rightfully deserve. Like, seat cushions or, you know, hair ties. We wander through life without realizing how great these under-appreciated items are. Muffins are among this group. I love muffins. They’re wonderful and versatile and such a great way for us to eat more carbs (you know you love carbs). The new book I have by Hedy Goldsmith, Baking Out Loud, has lots of amazing recipes, but this is one of my favorites so far.
Banana bread paved my way into the world of baking in my freshman year of high school, so I guess I have a soft spot for banana-baked-goods. It’s so, so important that you use bananas that are nearly over-ripe to ensure optimal, sweet banana flavor. Once you’ve got a few of those lying around, you’re eligible to make these amazing muffins.
To start, preheat your oven to 375 and grease your jumbo muffin pan (I’m a sucker for muffins, but jumbo muffins steal my heart every time). Sift together 1 2/3 cups of flour, 1 1/4 tsp of baking powder, and a healthy pinch of salt. Now, beat two sticks of butter in your handy-dandy mixer, add 1 1/2 cups sugar and 2/3 cup of ground toasted hazelnuts. Once this mixture is light an fluffy, beat in two eggs, one at a time, and 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Now you can slowly add in the flour mixture until everything comes together. In a separate bowl, fold together 1 1/3 cups granola (I got a not-overly sweet maple/pecan granola from Trader Joe’s that worked well!), 3/4 cup sour cream, and 2-3 mashed bananas. Then, fold that mixture into the open arms of the batter. Fill your jumbo muffin tins and sprinkle the tops with some more granola and a touch of cinnamon sugar (it makes for a divine top crust!). Bake for 25 minutes or so, until a toothpick comes out clean, and then take them out of the oven to cool. You can eat them plain (they’re moist and tender and seriously delicious), or put some Homemade Nutella on them, too. Yup, I went there.