Banana bread is usually the first to go on bake sale tables, so why we don’t whip this up for ourselves on a regular basis is really hard to comprehend – especially when we all, very often, have access to the secret ingredient – mushy, blackened, overripe bananas. This is such a no-brainer to put together that I often leave a bunch to over- ripen with the intention of making this popular bread. Or check at your grocery store in the “over-ripe” bin and pick them up at a deep discount, pop them in the freezer and you’ll be ready to go at a moments notice. At my house, it’s consumed at breakfast, lunch, dinner and anytime in between, so a loaf disappears as quickly as roaches when the lights go on. How I know this, I’m not really sure – really!
So, meet blender banana bread – without a doubt the easiest throw down yet. The wet ingredients go in the blender or food processor and the dry go in a bowl – whiz the wet, add to the dry, a dozen strokes later, in the pan, in the oven, on the rack, down the hatch – and that’s pretty much how it goes every single time! I’ve put together a very basic bread, and as usual, it’s the method that you need to focus on – master the bread and then the fun begins – start adding all kinds of delightful things: chocolate chips, toasted nuts and or/seeds, dried fruit, raisins, grated carrots, coconut, spices, cocoa powder, citrus zest, flavour extracts – so think of the bread like the Beatles and the variations like how The Jam, Todd Rundgren, U2, Petula Clark, Humble Pie, Susanna Hoffs (of the Bangles) or the Grateful Dead cook it up – the former wrote it, and the latter brought their own flavour.
So never be alarmed again when those bananas are turning, and no one will touch them. It’ll be our little secret – little do those we cook for know that they’ve been devouring past-their-prime bananas by the boatload – all dressed up as an awesome loaf of banana bread. And check out my tweets to get the complete banana bread story!
1. Butter, eggs, bananas & sugar go in the blender or food processor.
2. Whiz for 20-30 seconds.
3. Measure the dry ingredients into a medium-sized bowl.
4. Wet stuff is ready to go.
5. Add the wet to the dry and stir briskly with a dozen or so confident strokes – the more you mix it, the more puck-like the result!
6. Until it looks like this.
7. Get it in the prepared pan, use a knife to smooth out the surface and put it in your preheated oven for close to an hour.
8. What a difference an hour makes!
9. Talk about banana bread perfection!
10. Absolute perfection!
11. Perfection needs a little moment of its own.
12. Banana bread in its purest form – feel free to lose your mind!
yield 1 loaf
Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease a 9″x5″ loaf pan and set aside. In a blender or food processor put the following and whiz for 20-30 seconds:
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 2 very ripe bananas
- 3/4 cup sugar
In a medium-sized bowl put the following:
- 13/4 cup flour
- 2 tsps. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 tsps. cream of tartar
Add the wet mixture to the dry one and stir until just combined. Put in prepared pan and bake for 50-60 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. Allow to cook on a wire rack and remove from pan when cooled.
An endless variety of additions can be added before the baking:
- chocolate chips
- toasted nuts and or/seeds
- dried fruit, raisins, cranberries
- grated carrots
- coconut flakes or chunks
- a shot of espresso coffee
- a shot of rum or brandy
- various spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, cayenne
- cocoa powder
- citrus zest
- flavour extracts
- oatmeal crisp topping
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