We are young people who are both grown up and completely immature.

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Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins: Everything Will Be Ok

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

I’ve noticed something interesting recently, about the way my generation thinks about the present and the future. Our everyday lives seem to defined by a ‘movement’ of sorts, either by observers of our generation, or ourselves. We’re hipsters! We’re feminists! We’re liberals! We’re entrepreneurs! We’re socially conscious! We’re locavores! We’re vagabonds! We’re 2.0!

We’re living in a very self-aware world, I guess is what I’m saying. And sometimes when you spend a lot of time looking down from a distance not too far away from where you’re standing, things can get weird.

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

This piece, in which the author talks about the necessity of finding your calling and pursuing it versus doing what you think is expected of you, has been making the Internet rounds. Women are being encouraged to eliminate the word bossy from our vocabulary. Apparently, there’s even a new term of us! No longer Yuppies and Millennials, we are now ‘Muppies’ (not to be confused with Muslim Urban Professionals, a term that predates the new definition; apparently someone didn’t do a any fact-checking). I’m still unclear as to whether I ever made the Millennial cut or if I’m still Gen X…

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

Let’s just say that for the better half of my 30+ years, I feel like who I am has been defined and redefined for me by journalists, bloggers, sociologists, startups, technology pundits, television shows, and self-professed lifestyle ‘experts.’ I am not saying that past generations didn’t experience similar judgements but I do feel that the proliferation of opinions — from every which direction — has come to what feels like a pitch point.

We are young people who are both grown up and completely immature. Over the course of our lives we have been told we are too ambitious, not ambitious enough, entitled, worldly, self-absorbed, workaholics, addicts, unfocused, overeducated, uninvolved in civic duties. We never grow up. We grow up too fast.

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

As someone who has always spent a lot of time overanalyzing (I used to ponder the meaning of death, laying still as can be, when I was 12), I find this type of judgement to get a bit overwhelming.

At the end of the day, I think it’s unhealthy to wake up every morning asking yourself what is the meaning of life.

Maybe that’s just me, but I know I need to get better about accepting that everyday life should be valued for what it is: moments of pure joy, punctuated by frustrations and disappointments with intermittent days of incredible admiration for new experiences, and a routine that makes you feel at peace. Whether that’s based on what you should or must do, whether it means you’re the boss or not, we all should be allowed to walk through life without a sign taped to our backs.

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

Sometimes, a cup of coffee in the morning is just that; not a statement about labor laws or fair pay. A job is a place where you like the people and what you’re working toward; not a daily mission to change the world or a step on the corporate ladder. The admittance of defeat is temporary because the next day is an opportunity to do it better.

We can occasionally buy into the hype of a juice fast (because we all know it’s just a hype that will blow over like the Atkins Diet) AND indulge in some good old banana nut muffins, yo. I’m not here to change the world today. And that’s totally a-ok.

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins
*makes one dozen
adapted from this recipe

1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground nutmeg
3 large, ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup of sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 stick of unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup of milk
1 large egg
3/4 cup unsalted macadamia nuts, toasted and roughly chopped

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Line 12 muffin cups with cupcake liners/papers.
3. Sift together the flours, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg into a large bowl.
4. Combine the mashed bananas, sugars, butter, milk, and egg in another bowl. Stir the wet mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir in half of the nuts.
5. Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups and sprinkle the tops with the remaining chopped macadamia nuts.
6. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Musical Pairings: Quilt – Held In Splendor + Banana and Macadamia Nut Muffins

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Posted by Kasey

KaseyProfileSunspot

Kasey is the food editor and co-founder of Turntable Kitchen. She loves dark chocolate, warm crusty bread, and traveling to new places. She speaks Russian, but does not like vodka.

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan

    YES to just needing some good ol’ banana muffins some days. Love the points you are making here, like you are reading my mind! : )

  • Nicole

    This topic is so interesting because I frequently am attracted to a catchy headline, only to start reading and feel like trusting my instincts would serve me better than listening to “experts” tell me what I am and what’s typical. Of course, there are gems out there that give me a new perspective on things, but it is easy to get caught up. Thanks for sharing your thoughts! And whoa, these muffins! It sounds like a delicious take on banana nut.

  • http://www.ohladycakes.com/ Ashlae W.

    Amen, sister. I think labels can be incredibly isolating and dangerous. I ripped that sign off my back so long ago because I’m not just a “liberal” or a sometimes “vegan” or any of the other buzzwords I oftentimes associated with my existence. I am, however, a lover of banana nut bread so I’ll wear that label loud and proud. ;) XO

  • http://www.southernsouffle.com/ Erika

    I really enjoy your post. So much truth and honesty in your words. The lifestyle experts always seem comical to me because hardly anything ever seems to relate to my life. I’d much rather enjoy these muffins than to worry about if I am pursuing the right path or doing what is “expected” of me. I’ve focused on those things far too much in my 30+ years. :)

  • http://www.yummysupper.blogspot.com/ erin @ yummysupper

    Beautiful post Kasey! While I’m firmly in the Gen X category, I so know what you mean. I think we are surrounded with too much pressure, comparison, expectation, exposure… it can feel stifling sometimes. I’ve really been noticing that lately.
    I’ve been feeling a strong need to unplug, smell, taste, see, be in the world without analyzing it. I crave that grounded feeling I get when I’m in nature with my kids, or traveling. I think it’s possible to feel that way in our home lives, but it’s hard to cut out the noise, isn’t it? I keep trying.
    xoxox to you and yours,
    E

  • http://www.fallsannie.com AnnieP

    wise words! It’s difficult to feel immune from all the analysis by the powers that be and from ourselves. Thanks for the reminder to step away; to feel, to breathe, to smell and just experience life as it is, without perpetual scrutiny.

  • cindy ensley

    I love your thoughts on all of this! I’ve spent a lot of time overthinking and being a worrier–even as a child–and I have worked really hard to be okay with a simple, good life. I’m more than okay with not making huge waves, or paving any pathways, but just trying to make small differences in my personal life–trying to be a better person everyday, navigating motherhood the best I can, and generally finding happiness where I can. I just want to be in it. I think that’s why cooking/baking are so important to me, it’s something we need to do–feed ourselves and others–that also makes us happy and human on the most basic level.

  • Kate Ramos

    Amen sister! Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed with everything I HAVE to do or SHOULD do to be relevant to this world when what I’d rather do is make these muffins and sit on the floor with my kids and eat one and not give a damn.

  • Lindsey (Dolly and Oatmeal)

    Girl, bravo! Couldn’t have found the words to say this as straight-up as you did here! I think a lot of times people feel safe living in a world defined by labels and categories, that somehow they can make sense of who they are by these “things”. This is such a beautiful post, and such a great recipe!

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