Don’t you just love December? It’s always been my favourite time of the year. During the first week of December, we put up all our Christmas decorations and slowly start our preps for the 25th. This year has had its fair share of ups and downs….. several downs infact, as many of my loved ones have moved away from Dubai. And with Covid still on, I personally don’t have that high spirited feeling. But with kids at home, it’s all about making them feel special and including them in my annual Christmas bake off. I usually make around 10-12 cakes that I regularly distribute with family and friends, it's a tradition my mom started and here I am continuing her legacy.
A lot of you will be busy making fruit cakes and plum cakes, but these are not sadly appreciated at my household. Hubby is a mega chocolate fan and the kids love simple cakes without too many elements in it. So to keep up the festive spirit, I made this delicious Spiced Banana Muffin. It has a small amount of ground spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger to get that Christmassy feeling and boy the house just smells amazing with the fragrance of these baked goodies as you take them out of the oven. I have used my own glutenfree flour mix for this, but feel free to replace this with whole-wheat flour or unbleached regular flour.
The muffins as is are just mildly sweet (so perfect for those with diabetes or sugar issue, since only natural sweeteners have been used) , but once you top it with the Vanilla Glaze, it balances out the sweetness very well. If you wish to make these muffins without the glaze then you can add more honey/ date syrup or 1/2 cup brown sugar to the batter.
Ingredients for the Muffin batter
1 mashed ripe banana
1 and 3/4 cups Glutenfree flour/ or wholewehat flour
2 tbsp coconut flour
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp date syrup
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
Sift all of the dry ingredients together into a mixing bowl- the glutenfree flour, coconut flour, baking soda, ginger powder, nutmeg powder, cinnamon powder and salt. Beat the eggs well. In large mixing bowl mix the honey, melted coconut oil, vanilla extract, mashed ripe banana and the date syrup well. Now to this add the beaten eggs and mix it well. I usually use a whisk, but you can use a hand blender or a stand mixer too. Once all the wet ingredients are well incorporated, slowly bit by bit, add the dry ingredients and start folding it in. It must come to a nice and smooth consistency.
Keep binding the dry ingredients with the wet until it’s comes to a nice thick pourable batter. If it looks too thick, feel free to add ¼ cup dairy of your choice or just plain water. This really depends on the kind of glutenfree flour you use. Set it aside for 10 minutes if you are using glutenfree flour, as it thickens over time. Once the batter is ready, scoop out and fill up in your muffin liners. Bake it in a pre-heated oven (180°C) for 20-25 minutes or more. I used large muffin liners, which was basically two ice-cream scoops of batter in it. But if you have mini muffin liners or smaller ones, then the baking time is lower. In any case you can do the prick test to see if they are ready. The muffins need to cool well before you start frosting them.
Ingredients for the Vanilla Glaze
1 cup icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup double cream
In a bowl, just mix all the above ingredients to get a nice thick paste like consistency and spread with a spoon or a spatula over the cooled muffins. This is the fun part where you can involve the rest of the family. Top it off with finely chopped pistachios or fruit/ nuts of your choice.