The productive “courgeana” plant!!

What do you do when you have an abundance of courgettes and some over ripe bananas? Make muffins, of course!

I’ve been working away  a lot recently including some very exciting trips to RHS shows – I’ve got lots of photos to share – and updates from the garden and allotment too.

Popped up the allotment yesterday evening to find that I had somehow forgotten to put poles in for some of my beans: they were waving their tendrils hopefully in my direction, poor things. I’ll be heading up there today to rescue them. How daft is that, forgetting to give climbing French beans something to climb up? 🙂

This weekend Charles and I hosted a two day course. I use whatever we have harvested as the inspiration for the lunches, which are entirely plant based (with the exception of some local organic butter for those who want to spread some on their bread). People come from across the UK and worldwide too – this weekend we had people from America, Poland and Switzerland.

Here are some of the vegetables and herbs Charles brought in from the garden. These are real life and not fancy photos, all taken with my iPhone whilst I’m working – hence the unglamorous background!

It’s fun using the produce from Charles’ garden, there’s a different perspective because  his garden is a market garden, mine is family style, so although we grow many f the same things, there are some differences too. At this time of year, I have more varieties of summer squash, courgettes and soft fruit. Charles’ aubergines and peppers are way ahead of mine – his greenhouse is much more insulated and mine were set back in the polytunnel during the cool and dark June that we had this year.

This was Saturday’s lunch:

And here is Sunday’s lunch. Scroll over to see what the dishes are. My favourites here are the two aubergine dips.

The homegrown beans – czar and borlotti – were harvested in autumn 2018. Soaked the night before and cooked in the morning for 30 minutes, they provide a delicious source of protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals right through the winter, spring, summer and to autumn when then new harvests are dried and stored.

The colours of fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs are so inspiring!

My courgette plants are going crazy! I’ve gone from “oooh, a courgette, how exciting” to “oh my goodness, why did I grow so many plants”… I’ve been working away a lot too so am now the proud (?) owner of a box of marrows. Marrow chutney, marrow jam, marrow curry, marrow with marrow sauce…..

It’s fine to use larger courgettes for the muffin recipe: remove the seeds and peel, if the skin has become tough.

Bananas tend to go over ripe quickly in this warm weather too, so this recipe was inspired by two ingredients that needed using up. Both make this muffin so moist and yummy!

I’m a big fan of cup measures, especially for making muffins for the courses, they are so easy and time saving.

Courgette and Banana Muffin Recipe

Note on the weights:  Charles’ cup measures are a different size to mine*:  one cup = 250 ml which is often the size of cups in UK shops,  so that is what I used to make these muffins. I have calculated the weight in grams too.
*my measuring cups are American, I bought them in San Francisco – my Dad lived there for years – so I have happy memories whenever I use them of that beautiful city (236g = 1 US cup)

The recipe makes approx 24 muffins

Dry ingredients:

2 cups (500 ml/250g) self raising wholewheat flour
2 cups (500 ml/250g) self raising white flour
1 cup (250 ml/100g) porridge oats
1 cup (250 ml/170g) sultanas
1 tsp baking powder

Wet ingredients:

3-4 bananas, mashed
1 cup (250 ml) grated courgette
1 cup (250 ml) plant milk
1/2 cup (125 ml) sunflower oil (or other light oil)
1/2 cup (125 ml/125g) soft brown sugar
1/2 cup (125 ml) maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)

Vanilla sugar to sprinkle (optional)

Preheat the oven to 180˚C

Mash the bananas with a fork. Place the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the oil, sugar, plant milk and maple syrup.

Put everything in the large bowl and mix together carefully, ensuring that all of the flour is mixed in.

Spoon into the the muffin tins.

The most eco-friendly way to prepare the tins is to spray lightly with oil before spooning the mixture in, but for our courses, where people are moving around whilst munching, I use these baking cups. I’m not all that enthusiastic about the brand name (it’s a little “judge-y”) but they do have a good range of biodegradable unbleached baking papers which can be composted.

For an extra crunch, sprinkle some vanilla sugar on top. This is optional of course. if you don’t have any vanilla sugar, then regular sugar is fine. I use other homemade sugars for muffin sprinkling too – elderflower is gorgeous, as is citrus sugar.

I make vanilla sugar using a couple of beans snapped in half and split open in an old jam jar, topped up with unbleached cane sugar. They can be reused again and again. Worth making some just to sniff the jar, it smells divine!

Put in the oven for 20 minutes or so until cooked. I leave them in the tins on the cooling tray for 5 minutes before lifting out and leaving to cool.

Yum!

I used yellow courgettes in this recipe, green are fine too, as are grated summer squash.

Variations:

Replace the sultanas with the same quantity of chocolate chips, nuts, raisins or other dried fruit (chopped to bite size if necessary).

Replace the courgette with grated apple or pear.

For a non-vegan version, replace the plant milk with dairy and the oil with melted butter.

Is it a Courgeanna or Bananette?

I know these bananas are not over ripe, but I took the photo after making the muffins so used the fresher bunch of bananas!

2 comments

    1. Any plant based milk – so made from nuts, soy, oats and suchlike. Totally fine to substitute with dairy milk for a non-vegan muffin

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