Are there foods you really like but don’t eat often enough? Not because they’re hard to find or to make but because you don’t think of them? It may seem silly to not enjoy something so accessible but there are a couple of items that fit into this category for me: tuna salad sandwiches, chicken salad sandwiches and peanut butter & jelly sandwiches (it didn’t escape my notice that they all happen to be sandwiches).
I love tuna sandwiches with barbecue potato chips. When my sisters and I were kids we liked to top the tuna salad with a few chips before pressing the second slice of bread onto the bottom layer. The added crunch was a nice touch. As for chicken salad sandwiches, I like them open-faced with lots of celery and with the perfect proportion of mustard/mayo/relish. I eat the two a few times a year but as much as I enjoy them I can’t quite figure out why it doesn’t occur to me to make them more often.
It’s the same with peanut butter & jelly sandwiches…or just peanut butter, in general. I always have several jars of it in my pantry because my husband could never be without it but again, I always seem to find myself reaching for something else. Have you ever had rice cakes (or toast) with peanut butter and honey? It’s one of the best things ever. Or chocolate peanut butter ice cream? I went through a phase a few months ago when that was the only frozen treat that would satisfy.
Today, instead of reaching for the ever-present jar of cookie butter on the counter for a sweet bite, I selected the peanut butter instead. But one mouthful wasn’t enough so I made these muffins. Peanut butter-y with added sweetness from chocolate chips, soft from a banana I added at the last minute and nicely textured from oats and wheat germ, these muffins were the perfect treat with my afternoon tea. They’re not very sweet at all and with no butter, only one egg and minimal sugar, I didn’t feel bad for eating more than one. These are so easy to make; I predict that it won’t be as easy to get peanut butter out of my mind from now on.
- The original recipe did not have the chocolate chips, banana or the vegetable oil in it but I found them to be worthwhile additions.
- The original recipe called for baking at 400°F. With my convection oven the rule of thumb is to bake 25°F lower with a 25% reduction in bake time. I found this to be a bit too hot so I reduced the heat and recommend the lower temperature below. Ovens will vary so err on the conservative side.
- There is room for more oats because of the added moisture provided by the banana and vegetable oil so I think I’ll add another 1/4 cup next time. These are light, cake-like muffins.
- ¾ cup flour
- ¼ cup oats
- 2 tablespoons wheat germ (raw or toasted)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup brown sugar, packed
- ¼ cup peanut butter (I used a generous amount of Adam’s Organic Unsalted)
- 1 egg
- ½ cup milk (I used soy milk)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 very ripe banana, mashed
- ½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips
- Preheat your oven to 375°F. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ingredients above from the flour to salt. In a larger bowl, combine the brown sugar and peanut butter and beat with a hand blender for 1-2 minutes. Add the egg and beat well on medium speed, about 1 minute.
- Add the flour mixture and the milk to the peanut butter mixture and beat until well combined. Add the vegetable oil and banana and beat again. Stir in the chocolate chips.
- Grease a muffin pan or line with paper cups. Sprinkle the bottom with more wheat germ and divide the batter among the 12 slots in the pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the muffin comes out clean. Mine took 12 minutes at 375°F.