Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Really Good Banana Bread

It never crosses my mind to make banana bread, probably because I’m not the world’s biggest fan of cake-y things. But how many time-tested ways are there to use almost rotten bananas? Slim pickins as far as I’m concerned. So when I noticed 4 very brown bananas on the counter this weekend, I knew that Tristan (who has a real soft spot for banana bread) would appreciate a loaf.

Banana/zucchini breads, muffins and things of that nature usually strike me as too sweet, too floury, too busy or too dry. If I were going to indulge my sweet tooth, they wouldn’t make it into my top 10, or top 20 for that matter. But I was determined to find a simple, good recipe without too many embellishments. 

This version, which I adapted from Simply Recipes, is ultra moist with a spice content that’s not too overpowering. Plus it’s made with half whole wheat pastry flour, which you’d never guess by the taste. Surprisingly, I loved it. So much so that I can't wait for the next batch of bananas to go bad.

Really Good Banana Bread
This recipe only requires a mixing bowl and a wooden spoon. Spices can be bumped up or nuts added if desired. Adapted from Simply Recipes.

4 ripe bananas, smashed
1/3 cup melted butter
Scant 3/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour

Preheat oven to 350°F; butter a parchment-lined 4x8 inch loaf pan.

In a large mixing bowl, mix bananas and melted butter. Add sugar, egg and vanilla; mix well. Sprinkle baking soda, salt and spices over the top and stir well. Add the flours last; stir to incorporate. Pour into prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. 

Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and serve slightly warm slathered with salty butter (my personal favorite).


Martha said...

Awesome. And you can pretty much swap out the banana for pumpkin or zucchini.

Anonymous said...

Kate, I finally made this banana bread and it is scrumptious. I had to sub a gluten free baking mix for the wheat flour so that Jim could eat it. Surprisingly I can barely tell, if at all, that it is gluten free! Jim loves it too!