Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Everyone loves banana bread, don't they? I adapted this recipe from one published by Gourmet magazine back in the late '70s. I like my banana bread to taste like it has bananas in it. Thus my sequential photos of when the bananas are just right: the first - not even close.
nope, still not ready.
OK, this is close enough. (Any further and I'll probably lose my readers, lol. )
The recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups banana puree and I'm sure I'm a little short, but it'll be as it will be this time.
Preheat your oven to 350 F.
Then measure out 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar.
Grab two eggs.
Measure out 1/2 cup water to which you've added 1 teaspoon vanilla.
Next, into a sieve (or flour sifter) measure 2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 2 Tablespoons buttermilk powder. (I think the original recipe called for 1/2 cup buttermilk, so if you prefer that, then omit the 1/2 c. water and the 2 T. buttermilk powder.) Sift and then stir this all together and set aside.
OK, now we're ready to roll. Grab a stick of butter (should be softened, or at least at room temp) and a stick is 1/4 pound, or 4 ounces, or 1/2 cup - whichever you're accustomed to calling it. Cream the butter with the sugar.
I'm impatient, and I'm glad I don't have to use a wooden spoon like in 'them thar olden days' so I use my electric mixer. And I probably don't cream it sufficiently to please a master baker. I still have a somewhat grainy texture, not a smooth and cream-y texture...doesn't bother me.
Once you've creamed the butter and sugar, take those bananas out of their peels and mash them in a bowl, they don't have to be pretty, they'll get mixed in with that electric mixer.
Don't those super-ripe bananas look great...they have so much flavor, and sugar content at this point...and almost an alcohol fragrance.
Mix them up real good... er...'well'...as Nick would correct my grammar ;)
Then, add your eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Once the eggs have been incorporated, start adding your flour alternately with your liquid (either the water & vanilla, or the buttermilk)...
beginning with the flour and ending with the flour. I usually add about 1/3 of the flour, then 1/2 the liquid, the next 1/3 of the flour, the last of the liquid, then the last of the flour.
Mix until the flour is incorporated - no dry clumps.
At this point, if you like nuts in your banana bread, they can be added. 1/2 c. chopped walnuts. Nick is allergic to peanuts so avoids all nuts and I don't really like nuts in my banana bread so I leave them out, most of the time. If I'm making two, I'll add them to one because Marty likes it with nuts.
ummmm, it already smells like banana bread...
Pour the batter into a buttered and floured 12" x 4 1/2" x 3" loaf pan. If you don't have one like this, I'm sure a regular bread pan will work just fine.
Spread the batter so that it's fairly even across the length of the pan.
Place in preheated oven for 1 hour, yes, that long, that's a full 60 minutes ... test with a cake tester to assure doneness, sometimes it takes a little longer.
When tester comes out clean, turn oven off, open door and leave the bread in the oven for 10 minutes. Please ignore that dirty oven.
Remove from oven, place on cooling rack leaving bread in the pan for another 10 minutes.
Turn out onto rack to cool completely....
or, if you're as impatient as I am after an hour and a half of smelling this yummy deliciousness, then slice off a piece or two and smear my other favorite food onto it...yes, butter is food.
Side note: I had so much trouble with getting this to structure right. I sure wish that the way I'm typing and adding photos looked the same after I post as it does when I'm doing it, which is complicated enough!...and that while I'm trying to compose that the photos wouldn't disappear (or were easily recovered if they do) when I backspace one too many times or in the wrong spot. I think I need a Blogger For Dummies book :)