Some people live for the weekend, I'm beginning to live for Wednesday. It's the only day of the week that my daughter doesn't have a soccer-related activity after school/in the evening and she gets out early from school. I have to hang all afternoon to be around if she's chilling with friends and because she meets her Mandarin tutor late afternoon, so I can catch up on stuff around the house, and most importantly, I have some time to tinker in the kitchen. You KNOW I love me some tinker-time.
I've been talking on my Facebook page (you can follow me here and get all my public posts) about how I want to do more experimenting with gluten-free baking. I used to be a mad, mad baker when I was eating gluten. I was in pain, but man, do I love baked goods. Breads, cookies, cakes, pies . . . . really, I haven't met a baked good I don't like. It's so hard to find stuff that's worth the calories that's GF, frankly. But more and more people are getting hip to this and so there are better flour alternatives by the week, more recipes to make and riff off of, etc.
I'm also on a not-wasting-food kick. I had some very ripe bananas on the counter and some walnut pieces that have been around for a while - didn't want them to go rancid. Banana-bread something-or-other was clearly what needed to happen. Couple that with my recent coffee flour acquisition, and some extra-fine almond flour from Bob's Red Mill (NOT almond meal, that's coarser, this is actually a flour-like texture!) and . . . well, I wanted to bake today.
I riffed off this recipe. The fun thing about muffins and quick breads is that you can fool around with ingredients a little, and not worry about your goods not rising, or falling.
Changes I made (is it possible for me to make a recipe as written? probably not.):
- I subbed 1/4 c. coffee flour for the coconut flour - they're both pretty dense and dry
- Because I didn't have tapioca flour, I subbed 1/2 c. King Arthur GF Baking Mix - which has a blend of flours and also some xanthan gum and leaveners.
- I left out the cream of tartar altogether
- I subbed avocado oil for the coconut oil
- I subbed raisins for chopped dates
These bake up dark brown - they look chocolatey, but they sure don't taste it - they are tender and banana-y, with some nice texture and crunch from the add-ins. Interestingly, coffee flour does not have a coffee-like flavor at all - it has a pleasant sweet, nutty taste. Perfect in this muffin recipe. You could make these without the add-ins, for sure. You could change 'em up depending on your preferences. Chocolate chips would NOT be a bad option. Just putting that out there. I'm trying to cut added sugars right now to help get rid of what I think's an arthritis flare, but I am not opposed to a lil' added sugar in life.
These are GF & DF - great with a slab of butter on 'em, or try this date paste. It's dreamy stuff to spread on bread or apple slices, dollop on your oatmeal, whatevah - and you can also use it as a sweetener sub in other baking that you do, too!
FYI - muffins and quick breads freeze like a DREAM. So let these cool thoroughly, throw 'em in a freezer bag and voila! Fresh muffins on demand. WHAT could be better than that?