Friday, January 30, 2009

The Locavore's Dilemma

I’m all for trying to be a locavore – you know, shopping at my neighborhood farmers markets, not eating strawberries in January, that sort of thing. If you asked me why, it’s probably equal parts feeling it’s the ‘responsible consumer’ thing to do, and also believing that local, season-specific food just plain tastes better.

While I subscribe to this food philosophy, my husband doesn’t really care so much where or when he gets his food, so long as it tastes good – although, seeing as I do 98% of the cooking in our house, he kind of ends up on the locavore bandwagon by default. So you can imagine my dilemma when my dear husband arrives home from the grocery store with…bananas. Bananas! The forbidden fruit, that abhorred, anti-poster child of the local food eatin’, Barbara Kingsolver lovin’ tribe. (It has something to do with each bunch requiring a small country’s annual supply of gas to reach us Americans, I think).

So what to do? I can either: 1) go all preachy on his ass and tell him such evil is not welcome in MY kitchen, or 2) accept that we may have different views when it comes to our food choices – and that's ok. Seeing as we’re only about 4 months into our union, I figured I’d hold off on the banana diatribe and save the preaching for a more worthy cause – like who should take the trash out (him), or the merits of still watching Grey’s Anatomy (it's getting good again, really!) And, if I'm being honest, that forbidden fruit does make a wicked batch of muffins. I mean, the real sin is letting a perfectly overripe banana go to waste after it came all that way. I think even Barbara would agree with that.

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins
1 ½ cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 very overripe bananas, mashed
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces (or ¾ cup chocolate chips)
Turbinado sugar, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line 12 (1/3 cup) muffins cups with paper liners. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. In a medium bowl, melt the butter. Stir in the sour cream, egg and vanilla, then fold in the mashed bananas and the chocolate. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry until just mixed – it will be very thick. Divide the batter into each muffin tin (a small ice cream scoop works very well for this). If you like that sugary crunch on top of your muffins, sprinkle each with a tablespoon or two of the raw sugar. Bake in the middle of the oven until golden and a tester comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

1 comment:

tiffany @ the garden apartment said...

It's tough to be a locavore in January/ February. I showed up at the farmer's market Saturday to find it nearly empty. On the other hand, every little bit of local eating helps. Perhaps you could introduce your husband to some good local cheeses or meats from DuPont Circle Farmer's Market this winter? (I don't know a man who doesn't like meat and cheese. :)
Your chocolate chip banana muffin recipe sounds great. That is exactly how I like my banana muffins-- the chocolate is the perfect compliment.