Chocolate Banana Streusel Muffins

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This is a bit of a belated post as I made these about 3 weeks ago. I always seem to have some overripe bananas hanging around as I’m not a fan of them when they start to go brown on the outside. This means I’m always on the lookout for recipes that will use them up. I spotted this recipe on Pinterest a couple of months ago and decided to give it a go as I had all the ingredients already. Chocolate and banana is a combination that can’t go wrong and if you add an oaty topping you can almost believe they’re good for you! I think these would be great for brunch but they will work just as well at any other time of the day with a cup of tea or coffee.

This recipe will make 8 muffins. As it is an American recipe the measurements are in cups. With hindsight after tasting these I think you could probably up the amount of banana as when I tried one the banana isn’t that strong so if you like a stronger banana flavour maybe try adding two bananas.
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Dulce & banana cake

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I received Lorraine Pascale’s ‘Fast, Fresh and Easy Food’ as a Christmas present from Mr Birdie. One of the recipes that caught my eye was this ‘Dulce & banana cake’ which is an upside down banana cake with a sticky toffee topping. I am a big fan of banana cake and had been keen to try making it. This weekend gave me the opportunity to try it out as we had a training day at work today and I thought it would make a good break time snack. It was definitely well received and kept our brains going. It works well cold as a cake or warm as a dessert with cream or ice cream. You can find the recipe here on the BBC website. You will need a 20cm square tin.
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Banana, walnut & chocolate chip loaf

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Well 2013 is nearly at an end. I would like to wish all my readers a very happy new year. 2013 was the year I started writing this blog and I have really enjoyed recording all my baking adventures. I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. I was very lucky to receive a personalised ‘Little Birdie Baking Blog’ apron from my brother and sister-in-law (thanks Ian and Steph!) as one of my presents. It has already been used to make today’s post!
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Wholewheat Banana Nut Loaf

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It has been a busy few weeks in the Little Birdie household. We moved three weeks ago and have been without the Internet until today. Upon moving in, we found the oven in our new house was possibly the worst oven in existence! A horrible, electric thing which took forever to cook anything and if it was cooked the bottom was burnt. Luckily Mr Birdie managed to find us a shiny new one for £50 (thanks to the wonders of Ebay!) My Dad visited us last weekend to help us tackle the garden (thanks Dad!) so I whipped up a banoffee pie last weekend but this cake is the first proper cake I have made in our new home. Hopefully many more baking adventures will follow.

I used to make this cake a lot a few years ago as it is super easy to make and a great way to use up ripe bananas. It doesn’t look that amazing from the outside but it’s what inside that counts. It is always well received (as proved today by the speed at which is disappeared in the staffroom at school) and it has never failed to produce a moist, banana-ery loaf that surely must be good for you as it contains fruit, nuts and wholemeal flour! The recipe is from Best Ever Baking by Carole Clements.
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Banoffee Pie

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Summer has finally arrived and it is barbecue season. Our friends Simon and Louisa (and their super cute son Finn) joined us this afternoon for a barbecue in the sunshine and to cheer Andy Murray on (well done Andy!) I was tempted to make Nigella’s Forgotten Pudding or her Strawberry Shortcakes but Mr Birdie requested banoffee pie so banoffee pie it was!

There are hundreds of recipes for banoffee pie on the Internet. After much perusing I opted for a Hairy Biker’s recipe from the BBC website which you can find here. I made some changes such as not putting banana in the cream on top and not putting any banana on the top. It is a simple recipe and it is super tasty. After a few baking disasters recently I was happy to get back on track and enjoy some baking success!
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Going bananas… Nutella Swirled Banana Bread

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I’m not normally one for mid-week baking but today I have been on a course so was home before 6 o’ clock (usually unheard of!) and decided it would be a good opportunity to use up some over ripe bananas. I’d seen    this recipe for Nutella Swirled Banana bread and decided it would be good to give it a go.
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