All this talk about going bananas or banana-breathing to not go bananas made me also wanna bake something with bananas! And guess what? Before I was knee-deep in sourdough starter and making all things from that starter, I was all about banana bread!
Banana bread was my first real delve into baking. And since my bff lived next door, like, right-outside-my-door-same-floor-same-side-of-the-hallway-next-door, she and her family got to reap the benefits of my trial and error banana bread! And I will say, you can't really mess up banana bread! I would get recipes and sorta follow them with whatever ingredients I had, but maybe not doing dry in one bowl and wet in another, and ya know what? It was very forgiving. Because every loaf came out delicious, and moist!
If you're more of a watcher and not a reader, here's my loosey-goosey way of making DELICIOUSLY IMPERFECT BANANA BREAD:
And if you need a recap, here's the gist of my loosey-goosey way of making DELICIOUSLY IMPERFECT BANANA BREAD:
- 2-3 ripe bananas
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 large eggs (I reco organic pasture-raised. Yes, they're more expensive but they are so much better for you. Plus, those hens live a happier, more natural life!)
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), melted and cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (If you happen have almond extract, I mean, who does? But if you do, try 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract and 1/2 a teaspoon of vanilla extract. This was one of my happy accidents. One night I only had almond extract and sub'd it in for vanilla and I thought the loaf had a whole new dimension. And that dimension was DELICIOUS!)
- 2 cups of flour (I mix all-purpose flour and whole wheat—whatever I'm feeling at the time. I also like to use King Arthur flours.)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Optional add ins: 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans, finely chopped, maybe chocolate chips?!
Let's bake it!
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Mash the bananas with a fork in a large bowl. (It's ok if they end up a little lumpy.) Then, add the maple syrup and, with an electric mixture, blend together. Next, add the eggs, vanilla (or a combination of almond extract) and butter. Blend again. Be sure and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in another bowl and then fold dry ingredients with wet ingredients. Or, you can do what I did and put those dry ingredients on top of the wet, give a little stir on top of the wet ingredients before you fold it all in together.
- Blend it up again with the electric mixer. My batter was pretty thick. Maybe it's supposed to be thick??
- If you're adding the nuts, this is the time to fold those in.
- Lightly grease a 9×5 loaf pan.
- Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan.
- Bake for about 55 minutes at 350 degrees. Rotate the bread a few times to make sure it cooks evenly. Bake until the bread is a golden brown and passes the toothpick test! Toothpick test? Yes! Poke a toothpick through various parts of the bread. If toothpick comes out with batter on it, it's not ready. Toothpick should come out clean! And be sure the check the middle! You don't want a raw middle for the next step! (Proven in my video. Wah wah waaaah.)
- Once it's fully baked, carefully take it out of the loaf pan and place it on a cooling rack for about a 1/2 hour. Tip: I like to first run a spatula between the bread and the pan to make sure the sides are not sticky. They shouldn't be, if you've greased your pan thoroughly.
- Let it cool for at least 20 mins. C'mon, have some control!
And you're done! Yay for banana bread! If you're lucky enough to live next to your bff, share the love! I miss my bff neighbor. She moved away. Like far away. Like 766 miles away.
p.s. I LOVE you, Carly!