Guess who just finished their 1,000 piece puzzle of Banff complete with lake reflections and all? MEEEEE!!!! Moses was out of town last week, so I took it upon myself to take down that bad boy. I Snapchatted the proof (I'm pretty sure my Snapchat username is akysar if you want to follow along-- and yes, that's a different name than my Instagram AND Twitter names, just to make it really confusing for you and me both). And in case you really don't believe that I finished that crazy puzzle last week, it's still hanging out in our office, and I'll happily message you a photo :D
Weekend update. We hit up the Rose Bowl Flea Market on Sunday and walked away with a lot of wants, but no actual needs and didn't buy a thing! Crazytown, yes, well, no, okay, maybe. What we did come away with was the knowledge that while it's an amazing flea market, it's fairly overwhelming, and you definitely need to show up with a game plan. Sunday also happened to be my Dad's birthday and my dear friend Jackie's birthday, too! We rounded out the afternoon with a birthday brunch with Jackie and co, a phone call to my dad, and ended the night with sushi and the Golden Globes. Talk about a great day and it wasn't even OUR birthdays! And speaking of great days, my Mom's birthday is next week Sunday, my godson's is a few days after that, and erm, ahem, ummm, my birthday is coming up at the end of the month, too! It's gonna be a month filled with celebration. And cake. Always, cake.
What's everyone up to this week? Big plans for the long weekend? Wait, do you even get Monday off next week? Who knows with all the holidays now, right? Anyway, I hope your week is productive and filled with awesomeness like these muffins! They're the breakfast version of one of my all-time favorite ice creams, Ben and Jerry's Chunky Monkey. These banana muffins are studded with (Guittard--my fave) semisweet chocolate chunks and coarsely chopped toasted walnuts and are super moist with flecks of vanilla bean goodness thanks to the power that is Vermont Creamery's Madagascar Vanilla Crème Fraîche. They come together quickly and easily and are packed with so much flavor that they'll double as a sweet snack, dessert, or in my case, even lunch. I may or may not have eaten three for lunch yesterday... ;)
Chocolate Chunk & Walnut Muffins
Makes 16 - 24 muffins
- 2 c. (240 g.) all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon (optional)
- 1/2 c. (113 g.) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 c. (100 g.) granulated sugar
- 1/2 c. (100 g.) light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 3 very ripe bananas, mashed (approx. 1 cup)
- 1 c. (227 g.) Madagascar Vanilla Crème Fraîche
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1 c. (approx. 100 g.) semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 c. (approx. 120 g.) toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
- Stand mixer
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowl
- Muffin tins lined with parchment liners
- Wire cooling rack
- Preheat oven to 350°F and pre-line muffin tins with parchment liners and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, kosher salt, and cinnamon (if using) and set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together on medium-low speed and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Add the eggs, bananas, crème fraîche, and vanilla extract to the butter mixture and beat on medium-low until thoroughly combined, about 1 minute. Add flour mixture and mix on low until almost combined. Mix in chocolate chunks and nuts.
- Spoon batter into 16 to 24 parchment lined muffin cups, depending on how big you want your muffins. Bake for 22-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes on in the pans, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Serve and enjoy! Optional: slather halves with softened, salted butter.