Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Best Banana Bread Ever!

       Who doesn't love banana bread?? Banana bread is the best way to use up old black bananas, the blacker the better. Well one of the ways, the other would probably be banana cake... or hummingbird cake!
         I've plopped a bit of butter on the slice above for photography purposes but this recipe really doesn't need the extra butter because it's nice, rich and moist. Unless you feel like you really need it, then I won't stop you ;) I had been searching around for banana bread recipes and have not moved on since I landed on this one. I actually originally came across it on the blog Ohh-Look by Belle which was taken from an old issue of delicious magazine, but have tweaked it over time and always use it as more of a guide than following it exactly.
        I've made it time and time again and every loaf that comes out of the oven doesn't take long to disappear, which is why I always bake two at a time. I know there are many recipes out there that take their claim as the best banana bread, but trust me with this one. It's the most easiest recipe ever, melt, mash and stir. Exactly what I like. And I've even had a request for it so here it is.

Recipe: Banana Bread
1 1/3 cups self raising flour
1/2 - 1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2/3 cup brown sugar
150 grams chopped walnuts
3-4 large over ripe bananas
2 large eggs lightly whisked
1 - 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
100 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees celcius, grease and line a small loaf tin.
2. Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl together with the sugar and chopped walnuts. Stir until combined.
3. In another bowl, mash the bananas and then stir in the melted butter, eggs and vanilla.
4. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined.
5. Pour into the tin and bake for one hour or until golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean.

        I've actually made my banana bread with sugar bananas and it gives a very different texture and taste compared to using regular bananas. I actually prefer the banana bread made with sugar bananas and even Ryan agrees it gives a much sweeter and better textured loaf. As they are generally smaller than your regular bananas I add a couple extra just to make sure there's enough banana in there.
        With the Queensland flood at the beginning of this year affecting the prices of bananas I guess I can count myself lucky that we have a sugar banana tree at home which has been giving us plenty of fruit all year round. Sometimes mum will also bring home the blackened bananas which have failed to sell at my uncle's grocery store, score for free bananas!

        Walnuts, I looooove walnuts and Mum says that they are what make the banana bread. I actually use a packet of whole walnuts and roughly bang them with a cleaver so that they are not all completely crushed or chopped. It helps to add another texture to the banana bread. And I usually add plenty of nice fragrant cinnamon.

        Um yes, mashed banana and melted butter looks really appealing. But I love the fact that I don't have to wait to soften the butter (or over do it in the microwave), and creaming the butter is just too tedious of a task.

        I find that if I grease the loaf tin well I don't need to line it and it just pops straight out. Tap it a couple of times on the counter to move any air bubbles around and up to the surface.

        I always love the moment when the timer tells me they are done. And then I pull out two of these beautiful loaves from the oven. The smell around the house is just blissful.

        It's always hard to resist temptation not to wait, hot straight from the oven is best. That way you get a nice thin crispy edge and a wonderfully soft fluffy interior with bits of crunch from the walnuts.


OohLookBel said...

Yum, look at all those walnuts! When bananas get back to a more realistic price point(!), I'm definitely going to make your version.

chocolatesuze said...

mmm theres nothing better than the smell of freshly baked banana bread yum!

Anonymous said...

A banana tree in your garden? You're a lucky girl! I agree with Suze, freshly baked banana bread smells like heaven.

sugarpuffi said...

that cake looks gorgeous! gonna make it when bananas drop to $3/kg

Richard Elliot said...

Best banana bread ever. That's a big BIG call!

Can't believe you've been keeping your banana tree secret during the drought we've been having!

penny aka jeroxie said...

you have a banana tree? that is even better!

Rita (mademoiselle délicieuse) said...

I don't even like eating fresh bananas all that much and I like banana bread! And yes, one of the easiest yet comforting things to make. It freezes, defrosts and toasts well too - that's when the butter goes on for me =p

Spencer said...

Looks absolutely delicious! I might have to try and recreate it.