Friday, May 7, 2010

Chocolate Chip Banana Cupcakes

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These little tasty treats are another rendition of my favorite banana bread. This recipe has been altered so many times I don't remember the original.
I have a confession to make. I am a curious person and as a curious person I rarely make the same thing twice. As much as I try to stick to the recipe, my curiosity kicks in, and I find myself thinking, "oh that would be good to add in", or "I wonder what would happen if I put this in instead". That is why baking and me have a love hate relationship, sometimes it turns out really good, and other times I admit to throwing a whole pan out..... which I hate doing, ask my husband, I have gotten pretty creative using the disaster experiments in other recipes.
This recipe was not an exception, I of course had to play around with it. This time it was a winner.
To the original recipe I added a few different flours, flax to up the nutritional profile, and I cut out a 1/2 C of sweetener, and 2 eggs. Surprisingly I like it even better with less sweetener, and the flax added. This is my new favorite banana bread recipe, and Scottie's too for that matter.

I added almond flour, for its nutritional benefits, and flavor. In a 100 grams of almond flour there are 21 grams of protein, 19 grams of carbohydrates, and 10 grams of fiber. It is -1 on the glycemic index. Compared to wheat flour which has 9 grams of protien, 76 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, and ranks 71 on the glycemic index. This makes almond flour a power food in fiber, and protein, and excellent option for people with diabetes, gluten intolerances, and people watching the glycemic index. I just got a cookbook that uses all almond flour for breads, cookies, cakes you name it. I want to experiment with it.
As a side note, if you are active carbs are a necessary thing to fuel your body, and so I think I will bake with a combo of flours including almond flour, to get a variety of nutrition and carbs in my diet.

Note: you can substitute the same amount whole wheat flour for the first four ingredients (2 3/4 C), but take out the guar or xantham gum as well, it is a binder for gluten free flours.

Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

1 C almond flour
1 C brown rice flour
1/2 C sweet brown rice flour
1/4 C tapioca flour
1 1/2 C sucanat ( a natural sugar, that has not been processed, you can find it at health food stores)
1/2 tsp guar gum, or xantham gum
4 T powdered buttermilk*(optional)
1 tsp. baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon
2 eggs
2 T ground flax
6 T coconut oil
8 oz can of crushed pineapple/ with juice
3 medium bananas mashed
1/2 C mini chocolate chips
1/2 C chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat the oven to 325. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, sucanat, guar gum, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon until well combined. In a separate bowl add the coconut oil, eggs, can of pineapple (with the juice), and mashed banana mix until well combined. Slowly mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined. Toss the mini chocolate chips in a 1/4 C of brown rice flour. Fold the chocolate chips and extra flour into the mix. Grease a muffin pan, or use cupcake liners and spoon the batter into a muffin pan, or mini muffin pan. If using nuts, sprinkle on top of the muffins. Bake the muffins for 40-45 minutes, and for the mini muffins 20-25 minutes.

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