Indeed. This is what I am thinking about… it is 5 minutes until the home bell and I am sitting at my desk at work, watching the wind blow the branches of the trees in all directions; the birds flitting around the Dahlias and the clouds trying to decide whether to stay or to go. Mostly, the clouds decide to stay.

Today has been one of those days. It started off with the lovely feeling that yes, of course Spring will come. The sun shone and the sky was a beautiful Tasmanian blue… and just after sending off and email to my beloved to remind him to get up from his desk to suspend the fresh washing from the line under the carport, it began to rain. Yes, I take the blame. It is my fault the weather turned foul. I jinxed it by nagging the husband. I learned the lesson. And the washing wasn’t hung out, btw.

I have been hungry all day. After being awake for just 3 hours, I had eaten a bowl of porrige and an apple, and consumed a glass of juice, two glasses of water, two coffees and a cup of tea. And from there, the hunger continued. This is rare for me, despite the pregnancy bit, because I have been feeling so nauseous I have not really wanted to eat and I never really feel like food, apart from jelly beans, which are not really food at all. Depending on who you consult.

And now the hometime bell has sounded. Children are running to car parks and bus stops, shrieking as they do so. I love my job and I will miss it next term when I am on leave (just 3 working days until maternity leave…).

But I digress. We were talking about banana choc chip muffins. They were on my mind because I was feeling hungry.

Cooking is one thing I love to do, especially with my children. They are the best type of helpers. I also love cooking in the evening, when the said children are asleep on their beds and the husband is working away at his computer. Between the hour of their bed time and when my television shows start is a marvellous time to clean up the kitchen and then mess it up again with pots and pans and baking dishes and mixing bowls and measuring spoons and wooden spoons and dustings of sugar and flour on benches, floor and clothing.

The last time I did this kind of cooking was a few nights ago and I got a sudden impulse to be a domestic goddess. I made banana muffins. I didn’t put the choc-chips in because I wanted something that childcare would actually allow my son to eat, but chocolate is such a great partner to banana that it really should not be skipped from this recipe.

Banana choc-chip muffins

2 cups SRF (wholemeal would be nice)
1 loosely packed cup of brown sugar
1 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
2 Tbsp oil
2 large mashed bananas
1 handful of choc-chips (or more if you’re greedy, like me).

Combine the flour and the sugar.

In a separate bowl, mix the egg, milk and oil. Add to the flour but do not mix yet. Add the mashed bananas and the choc-chips.

Stir everything together, but never overmix the muffin mixture. I only stir it a little bit, just to cover everything with everything else a little.

Add heaped Tbsp of mixture into the muffin trays. You could make small muffins (24) or medium muffins (12) or large muffins (6). If making choc-chipless muffins, sprinkle some cinnamon on the muffin tops for extra bite (or add it to your muffin mixture).

I cook my muffins when the Esse is on “Very hot,” which is somewhere between 220-250C.

Last week the fire had died down too much to bake, but I wanted to take some muffins to take to a friend. I had to cook with the electric oven! The muffins were nowhere near as nice. They were smooth on the tops, whereas I think muffins are best when they have rough, almost ugly tops. They were also drier than Esse-made muffins and, had we not consumed them so quickly, they would have gone staler sooner. They were also uneven, with assymetrical muffin tops. When I bake the muffins in the Esse, they usually have lovely even tops, rising to a lumpy peak.