Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Plantain-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cornbread Muffins

I usually associate plantains with black beans and rice, which all together is my favorite dish in the entire world. I always have plantains on hand, ripening on the counter for when the right time comes.  Well, the right time was this morning. I thought I'd switch it up and make something sweet instead of savory. Naturally, that also means chocolate!  
  
 
Adapted from allrecipes.com
  
Makes 6 -8 muffins 
 
1 ripe plantain, sliced and lightly fried in canola oil
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (I used Trader Joe’s white whole wheat flour)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup applesauce
1/2 cup almond or soy milk
1/4 cup maple syrup (or agave nectar)
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
  1. Fry plantain slices in canola oil over medium heat on both sides until nicely browned. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a muffin pan or line with paper liners.
  3. Combine cornmeal, flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
  4. Stir in applesauce, milk, maple syrup, and canola oil.
  5. Fold in chocolate chips.
  6. Divide the batter evenly into your muffin pan. (I squeezed 8 muffins out of this recipe)
  7. Top each muffin with 1 to 2 plantain slices. You can leave the slices visible or cover them with more batter…take your pick!
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
I originally thought that I'd add some maple extract to these, but I thought they turned out wonderful without it.  I'll probably try it next time just for fun.  If you're looking for a decadent treat that isn't super sweet, this is it.  The taste and texture of the cornmeal really puts a unique spin on the traditional banana chocolate chip muffin.  And the sliced vs. mashed plantains add natural sweetness to these, along with the wow factor.  Who doesn't like seeing golden little plantains peeking out of a muffin?  Not me! 

Enjoy!  :)