Thursday, February 17, 2011

Best Banana Bread

This is the all-time best banana bread recipe. A good family friend of ours made banana bread for my family when I was a little girl, and it was SO good that my mom asked her for the recipe; this is the only banana bread recipe that we have made since then, and that is the recipe that I am sharing with you today. And the kicker is- this friend doesn't even remember giving us the recipe... in fact, she doesn't even recall ever making banana bread! I have only made a few additions to the original recipe: Vanilla, an extra Banana, and the Cinnamon-Sugar crust...

2 cups Bisquick
1 cup Sugar
2 Eggs
2 Tbsp Butter, slightly melted
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Vanilla
Cinnamon-Sugar mixture for sprinkling
4 medium-large, over-ripe Bananas 
**the 'over-ripe' is key here; if you get squeemish at the thought of black bananas, please let me put your mind at ease; when bananas turn black, it is simply the carbohydrates ripening and converting to sugar. This makes the bananas sweeter for your bread. Carbohydrates in starchy produce ripens into sugars at colder temperatures. This is why bananas turn black when you keep them in the refrigerator. This is also why starchy produce (like potatoes and certain squashes) are in season in the winter. When the weather turns cold, the starches fully develop and ripen to sugars so that they are ready to eat.

This is the easiest recipe prep I could share; place everything in a bowl and mix with an electric hand mixer. You could also place it all in a blender and let it whirl until well mixed:

 Then spray a bread loaf dish and swirl a cinnamon-sugar mixture around until all the surfaces are well coated, like this: 

Pour the banana bread batter into the prepared loaf dish, and finish with another light sprinkling of cinnamon-sugar over the top:

Cook at 350 degrees F for 45-50 minutes, or until a knife is inserted a few inches into the middle of the loaf and it comes out without any wet batter. It is a dense bread, so be sure to check the middle to be certain that it is cooked all the way through before you take it out of the oven.

 I have found that if your oven tends to cook very quickly (like mine) and the bread consistently comes out too doughy in the middle, then lower the temperature to 325 degrees F and lengthen the cooking time to about 65-75 minutes. You just have to know your oven :)

 Beautiful! Warm and soft inside, with a sweet crunchy outside!

If you are someone who does not prefer the 'butt' of breads... this bread will change that. The delicious crust created by the cinnamon-sugar coating is irresistable! The first end slice, fresh out of the oven, is the most desirable:

If it lasts beyond the first day, I like mine toasted with a light spread of butter, like in the picture below. (You can also see Peter in the background enjoying his breakfast slice of banana bread along with his regular morning routine: ESPN top 10).

Additional Options:
This bread is great with some golden raisins or chocolate chips mixed into the batter before it is poured into it's baking dish.

1 comment:

  1. That looks delicious! I love banana bread.