Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Snack day

I’ve mentioned before that at Miss B’s school, we take turns bringing in snack for the whole class each day. With the number of kids in her class, that works out to each family bringing snack once a month, and occasionally twice, as the schedule rotates. (It’s our turn for a twofer this month.)

While in theory I appreciate the community spirit embodied in this method, in practice I am often dismayed by the reports I hear of what is getting handed out at snacktime—packaged rice krispie treats, fruit roll-ups, gummy whatevers. I don’t mean to be sanctimonious about this: I have sent in Goldfish for snack on more than one occasion, and once we even chose TimTams to share because a) we have a stash sent to us by friends down under who know how much Miss B and I love them and b) I was desperate. (I pretended it was an edible version of Show and Tell to mitigate my guilt.)

Generally speaking, though, I prefer a snack to have some nutritional value. I’m not claiming that either Goldfish or these muffins are the equivalent of, say, a bowl of oatmeal, but I sincerely hope that one of them provides at least a bit of body and brain fuel to get everyone through the last quarter of the school day. I don’t feel very confident that gummy worms do that.

Got ideas for nutritious school snack ideas to share? I’m always on the lookout for inspiration.

Banana-chocolate chunk muffins
Although Miss B loathes bananas in their natural state, she was hooked on these from the first time an Australian friend served them to her. Happily, this school is more open-minded than last year’s about bringing in home-baked goods.

6 oz/150 g butter
12 oz/300 g all-purpose/plain flour
6 oz/150 g sugar
1.5 tsp/7 g salt
3 tsp/15 g baking powder
12 oz/300 ml milk*
3 large eggs
2 medium-sized mushy bananas
1 cup chocolate chunks**
Cinnamon sugar (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Line two 12-cup muffin pans with paper liners and set aside.

Put butter to melt on stovetop or in microwave and set aside to cool. Mix together flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a medium-sized bowl and set aside. In a bowl or jug, combine milk, eggs and butter, whisking the eggs thoroughly. Make sure the bananas are sufficiently mashed up.

Dump the wet into the dry ingredients and mix together until just combined. Stir in the banana and chocolate chips, ensuring even distribution through the dough.

Scrape the dough into prepared muffin cups, and sprinkle the top of each lightly with cinnamon sugar. Bake 20-25 minutes, rotating pan halfway through, until a knife inserted in the center of one of the middle muffins comes out clean.

Makes 2 dozen muffins.

* I substituted half buttermilk and half heavy cream because that's what I had in the fridge.

** Aka chopped-up Hershey bars. Feel free to sub in regular chocolate chips (or even dark chocolate chunks if you want to feed them to more sophisticated palates).


Mark Scarbrough said... Best Blogger Tips

Well, maybe it was the chocolate chips that sold her on the bananas! Still, a great muffin like this one is irresistible by just about anyone.

Roving Lemon said... Best Blogger Tips

Hmmm, maybe I should try covering bananas in chocolate and see if that works?

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