Monday, April 19, 2010

Brown Bananas

I didn't like bananas as a kid. Even when my grandmother told me how good they were to eat and attempted to ply with me her homemade banana pudding with Nilla wafers. I just didn't like them.

Defying logic, however, I did like my mother's banana nut bread. Maybe it was the pecans, maybe it was the change to the chemistry of the fruit with baking, or maybe it was the cream cheese she spread on each slice. Regardless, I was hooked.

I've improved my attitude about bananas somewhat since reaching adulthood, and even willingly purchase them at the store, especially since my husband likes them in his lunch. I still don't like eating them straight out of the peel, though, and I absolutely cannot stand the mushy texture of an overripe banana. But, that is the perfect texture needed for Mom's banana nut bread.

Apparently, I was a bit exuberant in my last food shopping trip and I noticed several quickly browning bananas on the kitchen counter last night. What a perfect way to end our weekend....filling the house with the smell of banana bread. Yum.

Here's how to do the same at your place...

Banana Nut Bread
3/4 cup oil
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp sour milk (or buttermilk or yogurt) (See Note)
2 large mashed bananas
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Cream sugar and oil. Add the egg and stir to blend. Sift dry ingredients together and add to the wet mix. Add the sour milk and bananas. I usually mash my bananas in a separate bowl with a potato masher before adding to the mix.

Pour the mixture into greased 5x9 loaf pan. Bake for about 1 hour at 350 degrees F.

NOTE: Sour milk does not equal spoiled milk. To make sour milk, add a couple of drops of white vinegar or lemon juice to the three tablespoons of milk. Let it stand about 5 minutes. Carbon dioxide is created by the reaction of the acid in the sour milk and the alkali of the baking soda. It makes the batter lighter and more airy. You can certainly use regular milk for this recipe, but the bread turns out a bit more dense.

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