Making some time to browse on the internet + 3 ripe bananas = Sunday morning banana bread .
It was my turn to get up at 6.30am with Gabi (and today was actually a sleep-in for her) so what else to do but make use of my extra time making this banana bread that I found on my latest favourite baking resource.
As usual, while the recipe (below) is to be credited to the Joy of Baking website I have replicated it here for my future reference.
While baking the bread, I was a little disappointed that I didn't think of substituting wholemeal flour for the white flour and brown sugar for the refined sugar. In the end because once I started thinking about the brown sugar and couldn't stop, I decided to make a coconut and brown sugar concoction to add to the top of the cake. It was lovely and did smell extra scrumptious while baking, but in retrospect it is something I think you could add the top in the last 20 minutes. It made eating the cake a little messier. I also added lots of pecans (as suggested) to mine as I love, love, love them at the moment.
My only other hint, is to watch the timing, I was in danger of letting mine be on the dry side.
But when I came home this afternoon after a few hours at work, my fears of a dry bread were not realised because while I was away, with the rainy weather the boys indulged themselves in a game of Risk and quite a few slices of banana bread. I think there is about one quarter of the loaf left. So much for school lunches.
Recipe for Banana Bread
1 3/4 cups (245 grams) plain flour
3/4 cup (150 grams) castor sugar
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup (115 grams) toasted walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped (optional- not for me)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
8 tablespoons (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 very ripe large bananas (approximately 1 pound or 454 grams), mashed well (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
large banana, sliced (Optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place oven rack to middle position. Butter and flour (or spray with a non stick vegetable/flour spray) the bottom and sides of an 8-cup loaf pan (9 x 5 x 3 inch) (23 x 13 x 8 cm). Set aside.
Place the pecans on a baking sheet and bake for about 8 minutes or until lightly toasted. Let cool and then chop coarsely.
In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nuts. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl combine the mashed bananas, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, lightly fold the wet ingredients (banana mixture) into the dry ingredients until just combined and batter is thick and chunky. (The important thing is not to over mix the batter. You do not want it smooth. Over mixing the batter will yield tough, rubbery muffins or breads.)
Scrape batter into prepared pan and place the slices of banana on top of the batter for garnish. Bake until bread is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool and then remove the bread from the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Makes 1 loaf which will be eaten in less than 8 hours if left on a rainy day with three hungry young men and a board game to occupy themselves.