The Birds

“A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.” ~ Maya Angelou

Last week when we had snow and freezing rain, I was stuck in the house being bored because I don’t do the roads if any kind of freezing rain or ice hits them.  So I did what some people do when stuck indoors – I baked.

Looking for something to do with the very overripe bananas I had laying around, I found a recipe for Banana Honey Walnut Muffins.  Since I like all those ingredients, I thought the recipe sounded quite delicious.

So I got out all the ingredients the recipe called for to make sure I had everything.  Nothing worse than starting to cook something and realizing you don’t have one or more of the parts to the creation.  Looks like I had everything, so yay!

I’m sure you are wondering about now what this has to do with birds, since that is the title of this post.  Well, as I was stirring everything together I realized I needed something upstairs.  Honestly I forget exactly what it was but anyway I went upstairs.  As I was coming back down the stairs, I heard this very, very loud commotion outside.

Now when you walk into my house (it’s a two-story), there is a small foyer that is open to the 2nd floor.  Above the door is a very large, beautiful picture window that I have a love/hate relationship with but it lets in a ton of light which is wonderful.  As you are coming down the stairs, you can see out this window.  Once you reach the bottom of the stairs you can only see the sky, but mid-way down is a pretty view of a large tree out in our front yard.

So midway down I looked out the window and there must have been hundreds of birds in that tree!  Squawking little black birds making all kinds of noise.  I knew something would send them scurrying soon, so I ran down the stairs to grab my camera.  I climbed midway back up the stairs and starting shooting.  The angle of the steps to the window was a little awkward, and I really couldn’t capture ALL the birds that were really in the tree because the edge of the window covered them, but still,  those birds were really pretty cool!

And if you are wondering how the muffins turned out, they were delicious!

Here’s the recipe if you want to make some yourself!  (I found I like to set my oven for about 20 minutes cooking time, then test muffins in 5 minute increments so they don’t overcook)

Banana Honey Walnut Muffins
Recipe Type: Breads, Muffin
Author: Jennifer Segal, adapted from Food & Wine
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon honey, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana, from 1 large overripe banana
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup whole or low fat milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray, then line with paper liners (it is necessary to do both so that the muffin tops don't stick to pan).
  2. In a small bowl, toss the nuts with 1 tablespoon of the honey and cinnamon until the nuts are evenly coated (obviously, it will be very sticky). Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter with the sugar and the remaining 1/3 cup of honey until fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula if necessary. At medium speed, add the eggs one at a time and beat until fully incorporated between additions. Beat in the banana and vanilla until blended. (It will look grainy.) At low speed, beat in the dry ingredients in 2 batches, alternating with the milk.
  5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin (I like to use an ice cream scooper) and sprinkle with the nut topping. Bake the muffins until the tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn them out onto a rack and let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.

 

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