Banana & Sour Cherry Muffins
Bananas, flaxseed and spelt are all sources of tryptophan. This essential amino acid provides the building block for serotonin, a ‘mood boosting’ chemical transmitter in the brain. Sour cherries contain melatonin, a hormone that plays an important role in sleep – a time when brain chemicals like serotonin are replenished.
- 100 g coconut oil, melted
- 150 g unrefined dehydrated coconut nectar
- 280 g wholegrain spelt flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 eggs (or if vegan, 2 ‘flax’ eggs made with 2 tbsp flax seed mixed with 5 tbsp water)
- 4 large ripe bananas
- 200 g sour cherries, chopped
- 80 g chopped pecans
- 80 g coconut shavings, lightly toasted (optional)
- 1 pinch of sea salt
Preheat the oven to 160°C fan/325°F/Gas Mark 3 and line a muffin tin with paper cases.
Soak in hot water, with just enough to cover them, for 30 minutes (prevents the cherries burning in cooking).
If using flax eggs, make them up and leave for 10 minutes.
In a food processor combine the coconut oil and sugar.
Then add in 3 bananas and blend until the mix is just combined.
Decant the mixture into a bowl. Add the other half of the banana after cutting it into medium chunks. Fold in the remaining ingredients until the flour is fully incorporated (save a few of the pecans and coconut shavings to garnish the top).
Place 2 tbsp of mix into each muffin case, garnish the tops and bake for 30 minutes or until cooked through and the centres spring back when lightly pressed.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool. They can be stored in an air tight container for up to 5 days.
Allergens: nuts, berries. CNM recommends the use of organic ingredients.
Recipe by Francesca Klottrup, chef and nutritionist, lecturer on the Natural Chef and Vegan Natural Chef Diploma Courses. Photograph by Juliet Klottrup