Chocolate and banana muffins are another (delicious) way to use up sourdough starter, along with ripe banana's that no-one wants to eat. The sourdough starter needs to be fed regularly otherwise it will get too sour and probably a bit mouldy (or even die), so I try and use some every week and refresh the remains with some flour and water to keep it a happy. You may have noticed that I have a very relaxed *read 'lazy'* attitude to maintaining my sourdough starter!
I combined my two starters together (Derbyshire starter and a San Francisco starter from Christmas) because I hadn't labelled them and was getting them mixed up. Interestingly, they definitely had a different smell, although I couldn't tell any difference on baking. Now I have a single starter that could be described as multi cultural. Anyway, back to the story. I wanted to make some different bread for family tea instead of a sourdough, so looked for inspiration at the recipes on the BakeryBits blog. These are generally devised by Vanessa Kimbell and I love that she comes up with new recipes for sourdough bread, and also some interesting cakes and muffins using sourdough starter. She also uses a 'la cloche' baking dome so it fits my style of baking perfectly.
I digress......back to family tea..... I found two recipes that fit the bill for today's family tea; Chocolate and Banana Sourdough Muffins, and Cumin and Sultana rolls.
The muffins are incredibly easy to make. It really is a case of mix the crumble topping ingredients and set aside , mix the dry ingredients together, mix the wet ingredients together and then combine the wet and dry together. Plop the mixture into the muffin cases and then pile topping on the er.... top. Bung in the oven for about 20-25 minutes and there you have it, delicious chocolatey muffins
The bread rolls are an unusual combination of cumin and sultana, but it really works as a taste combination. The fragrance of the lightly toasted cumin seeds and the baking bread permeates the whole house making you instantly hungry. The rolls are shaped and then proved in the baking dome base and then popped in the oven with a pre-heated lid. It's so easy. In fact I made another batch this morning, since the last lot didn't make it past teatime.
I have to mention the amazing purple smoothie I made last week. It started with a spot of blackberry picking from the back of the car park at the flat. They are the most succulent, huge blackberries ever. I just couldn't resist and it only took about 20 minutes to pick nearly a kilo! I didn't fancy making jam using the pretty useless cooker that's in the flat, so decided to freeze the blackberries for smoothie-ing and juicing. What a purple delight a blackberry, yoghurt and banana smoothie is! And so very delicious with sourdough cheese scones for lunch.