Muffins are one breakfast item that love to bake almost anytime of the year, they are more like all around treat for me. There’s so many variations available that it doesn’t matter what season it is. But there are those muffins that are a must in my to do list during summer, and this Strawberry Muffin is one of them. You could probably guess why, because Strawberry is everywhere in the market during summer, and only on summer. During summer, I make it a point to make baked goodies that uses fresh fruits and since its Summer here in Vancouver now, expect to see more summer treats to come in my blog.
For today’s muffin variation, I decried to make a mashed up between banana and strawberry, do you like this combination? They’re actually pretty good, I like the combination of sweet mashed banana and the sweet and tangy taste of homemade strawberry jam. I had been making strawberry sauce and jam like crazy and so I thought I’d use some for this muffin.
What’s New in This Muffin
I always favor a slightly lift soft banana muffin texture than a heavy and dense texture. Quiet a lot of my banana bread and muffin recipes in my website have this kind of texture. Instead of just mixing all the dry and wet I ingredients together, I cream the egg and sugar to give the muffin a lighter texture. Since banana has a very thick and dense consistency when mashed, creamy the egg and sugar will help lighten the muffin batter thus giving us a lighter muffin. Also, since the Strawberry Jam is quite thick and heavy, having a dense banana muffin will be too much. Don’t worry because you will still get the same banana muffin taste and it’s a lot better I promise you.
Strawberry Jam, It’s Homemade
I used my homemade Strawberry Jam because I believe that homemade are always the best and even more when it comes to jam. It is easy to make and you can control the level of sugar. You just have to meet the bare minimum required so that you the thick jelly consistency. But of course you can use store-bought if that is your preference but it’s seriously easy to make. I hope you will consider at least giving it a try. Here is the Strawberry Jam recipe just in case you want to check it out.
You don’t need a lot for this recipe, about 1/4 – 1/3 cup just to fill the center of the muffins and to add a swirl on top of the muffins. I added 1 tsp at the center, I love the beautiful swirl look on top so I added a little bit lot more about 2 tsp. I would suggest not to add too much in the center as it will make the muffin too heavy.
If you happen to be partial with Strawberry and Banana combination, how about Banana and Nutella? Yes? Does that sounds good to you? Well, if you answered “Yes” then you shoot go checkout my Nutella Swirl Banana Muffins, it’s so good and full of Nutella goodness. It’s the same recipe as this one the only difference is the filling. So you see this banana muffin batter is really versatile, you can choose whatever Filling you like. If that is not still a no, I mentioned few other muffins below that you could try, I never run out of muffin options you know, I’m really crazy when it comes to muffins.
So anyway, why don’t I show you now how I made this muffins. Let’s get started!
What makes this different from other banana muffin?
Banana bread is a quick bread, and often times most of the recipes I saw doesn’t use a mixer to make it. Traditional banana bread has a heavy, dense and soft texture and that is not a bad thing. In fact, that was the texture that I only knew o until I got into baking and tries experimenting on my own. Although I also like that kind of texture from time to time, I discovered that a lighter and softer banana bread or cake or muffin is something that I enjoy. My Banana Chiffon Cake has a lightest and softest texture and it absolutely delicious. That cake uses a method of separating egg yolk and egg whites, the same method I used for Banana Walnut Sponge Bread. Those 2 have a sponge and chiffon like texture. This Banana Muffin is a cross between the texture of traditional and chiffon like texture. I was actually surprised how good it turned out. The method I used here is to cream the sugar and egg to build up air and to create lighter texture. I then added mashed bananas and dry ingredients came in last so that it will only require less mixing to avoid dense bread. Just a simple modification in the method gave me the soft and moist Strawberry Cream Cheese Banana Muffins!
Although this is a simple recipe, there are key things that you have to remember to get a nice soft banana bread texture.
Four Important Tips for a Light & Soft Banana Muffin
- Room Temperature Egg – Because this recipe call for creaming the egg and sugar, it is VERY important to have the egg at room temperature, so don’t ignore this reminder. A room temperature egg whips up better as compared to cold one. If you are short of time, you can submerge the egg in warm water for 5 minutes, that should do the trick
- Ripe Banana – only use ripe banana, the one with brown spots in the skin is the best one to use. Those brown spots are sign that the banana is ripe, and ripe means softer and sweeter. This is the state of banana that would give the natural sweetness to the banana bread or muffin. Now if you don’t have ripe banana, I’ve read that you can bake the banana wrap in foil at 300F for 10 mins to get it soft, however I personally haven’t tried that. I always prefer either buying a ripe banana ready to use for banana bread or buy a banana and let it ripe naturally in my kitchen counter. One thing to remember, the warmer the place you keep the banana, the faster it will ripen. This is why input my banana in the fridge specially during summer if I don’t want it to ripen fast, and I also wrap the end with the stem with a cling wrap. That will block the air from coming in and it will slowdown the ripening process.
- Don’t over mix – You’ve heard this over and over again in many recipes but I will still repeat it here. Over mixing can make the bread though because as you mix more, gluten is form and that causes a tough bread. Once you add the dry ingredients just mix it until combine, no more no less.
- Creaming Egg & Sugar – Although not a traditional process in making banana bread, creaming egg and sugar instead of just mixing everything in one bowl gave a lighter banana muffin texture. So don’t skip this step and see for yourself why I recommend doing this. Creaming the egg and sugar will allow air to build up into the batter thus giving a lighter and airy texture, almost like a cake but still feels and taste like banana bread, but better.
- 3 large ripe bananas (ripe with dark spots) – mashed very well
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil or any flavorless oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg – room temperature
- 1 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp buttermilk or milk
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup Strawberry Jam
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees and line a muffin pan with muffin liners or spray with oil if not using a liner.
- Mash Banana: Peel the bananas and mash using a fork or immersion blender. It doesn’t have to be super smooth, a little of chunk is fine. Add vanilla extract and oil and stir. Cover and set aside.
- Mix Dry Ingredients: In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- Cream Egg & Sugar: Using hand mixer or stand mixer, cream the egg and sugar until light in color and smooth and flowing consistency, about 5 minutes.
- Wet Ingredients: Turn the mixer in low-speed and gradually pour the banana mixture to the egg and sugar. Mix until just combined.
- Wet + Dry Ingredients: In low-speed, gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined, then pour the milk/buttermilk and mix just enough to combine. Do not over mix the batter. The mixture will be runny, that’s fine.
- Scoop Batter: Scoop batter in each muffin liner 1/4 full then doll up 1 tsp Strawberry Jam in the center. Pour batter to cover up to 3/4 full. Doll up again 1/2 tsp (or more) of Strawberry Jam on top and using a toothpick or any pointed object, slightly swirl the top.
- Bake 25 – 27 minutes or until the top and edge turns brown. A toothpick test might not work because there is a filling in the center.
Makes 12 – 14 muffins
Here are some other banana recipes, check them out!
Featured Video – Strawberry Compote
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Featured Video – Double Chocolate Banana Bread