I have mentioned before that I am no baker–I am too impatient and stubborn to measure things out exactly and follow explicit directions. I’m usually one of those, “If it sounds good, do it” kind of chefs, which usually does not fair well with baking. One of the recipes that I found can be toyed with, however, is banana bread. I got a recipe for banana bread a few years ago from one of my mom’s friends–classy, right? and I will say that it definitely allows for some experimentation, which I am a huge fan of. That being said, here’s my version of the recipe, that I find myself salivating over right now as I look out to the world from a sad lonely table in Tisch:
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 5 medium sized RIPE bananas (the riper the better when it comes to banana bread, meaning the browner, the better)
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 2 eggs
- 2- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour depending on how wet/dry the mixture ends up being (it’s always different every time) also regular all-purpose flour works just as well, I am just a fan of trying to make any baked good somewhat healthy
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup of honey
- a dash of maple syrup if you’re feeling ambitious
- 1 package mini chocolate chips (dark chocolate are my personal favorite)
- rolled oats to sprinkle over top as it bakes
Here’s what you’ll do:
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Take a large bowl and place the bananas inside, and mash with whatever utensil you feel best suits “banana mashing.” Personally, I end up just using a fork, but please, get creative.
Add the eggs, canola oil, honey, sugar, and the ambitious maple syrup and combine thoroughly with a wooden spoon.
In another bowl combine the flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda.
Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, as to avoid lumps from forming and from preventing your clothes from becoming part of the recipe. Normally Ina Garten would tell you to sift all of the dry ingredients together before adding them to the wet ingredients, but my lack of impatience says that step is unnecessary.
Add the chocolate chips, if there are any left after you have been snacking on them while making this recipe.
Finally, place the mixture into a standard loaf pan and sprinkle the rolled oats on top. Bake the loaf for about 50 minutes to an hour, checking the bread after 50 minutes every 5 minutes. The best way to tell it is done is to stick a toothpick inside, and if it comes out clean, your banana bread is all set to eat.
**This recipe also works great as muffins, the baking time is just slightly less. I will say though, nothing beats an entire loaf of banana bread. My favorite way to eat it is actually a big slice with a spoonful of greek yogurt on top, and I have eaten this loaf by myself in less than a week, doubling up on servings for breakfast and dessert.**