Gastronomi Klonowski: Muffins: the perfect mood booster

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Muffins, en route to a work study meeting. *Photo by Dan Klonowski ’17.*

The beautiful thing about living off campus is the freedom to be spontaneous in the kitchen. You have the power to make whatever you want, whenever you want. My thing for muffins stems to early August, when my parents drove up from Chicago to come visit me. As per usual when parents come to town, we made the Twin Cities rounds. Several delicious restaurants, an evening at MIA admiring priceless works of art, and most importantly, great seats at the Saints game, complete with postgame fireworks after a blowout win for the good guys.

Muffins, en route to a work study  meeting.  *Photo by Dan Klonowski ’17.*
Muffins, en route to a work study
meeting.
Photo by Dan Klonowski ’17.

Since they did so much cool stuff for me, I wanted to return the favor with a treat one morning. It being summer at the time, I noticed boxes of blueberries on sale at Rainbow, and decided some blueberry muffins would do the trick nicely. On the way to meet my parents in Downtown St. Paul, I hopped on the 21 bus, holding muffins in each hand. I certainly got some strange looks, but the smiles I got from mom and dad made it more than worth it.

Since muffins usually come by the dozen, they make a very shareable (and portable!) snack. My parents went home after a few days in town, but since then I’ve been making these muffins at least once a week for my friends on campus. They’ve become the unofficial snack of my weekly work study meetings, and spawned the admissions holiday known as #MuffinMonday. After meeting time, I generally distribute what’s left over to friends as I see them walking around campus. I like to think it raises morale and makes Mondays suck significantly less. It’s partially inspired by the love and kindness shown in my first year by the legendary Horseman of Macalester yore.

So the next time you see a large young man walking around campus with a muffin pan, think about what day it is. If it’s #MuffinMonday, you may be in for a treat. Or, since I’m giving you the recipe, you could always make a full dozen for you and the people you care about most. As always, bon appetit.

RECIPE

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

ingredients:

3 bananas, preferably overripe

1 egg

1/3 cup milk

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

1 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

¼ cup chocolate chips

directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a muffin pan with foil or paper muffin cups.

In a large bowl, mash bananas into paste with a fork or your hands. Mix in egg, milk and both sugars with a whisk or electric mixer.

In separate small bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt. Slowly mix flour bowl into the banana bowl a little bit at a time, until it is all incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips last.

Divide batter among 12 muffin cups and bake for 30 minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let them cool for a few minutes before enjoying, and store leftovers under a clean dish towel.