Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Bananas Were The Enemy

I've never been a fan of bananas. They bruise, they get mushy and brown, and they have those weird stringy things that are attached to them when you pull off the peel. To be perfectly honest, they really gross me out. So when I had my first sone Lucas, I never bought bananas. It was stupid now that I think of it because it's the easiest snack in the world to give them but I can't peel bananas with out gagging...literally. Just ask my husband. So one day someone offered Lucas a banana when he was probably 18 mo's old. He, of course, LOVED the banana. This began my struggle with the long yellow fruit.

Lucas is 5 now and he has 2 younger brothers so we always have bananas around. I thought by this time they wouldn't me grossed out anymore, but they do. If my husband Chris is around I make him peel them. Unfortunately, my kids taste buds go in and out of banana phases and you never know if they'll love them or hate them. So, sometimes we have yucky brown bananas sitting on the top of my nice, clean granite countertops. Eyesores! I had to come up with a disposal plan. I can't just throw them away, I'd feel extremely guilty about wasting the food. Ain't no way I'm eating yellow banana much less a brown mushy one. Then, I remembered my granny. She'd always make banana bread. This may seem like an easy idea for most of you but to me I hated bananas so much that I couldn't even imagine putting them into anything I'd actually eat. Since I love baking I figured "what the hell" and try it. Just once.

I built up the nerve to make banana bread. My husband LOVES it and his mother would always send us home with a loaf, so I knew that I'd get some major brownies points. The first instruction was to mush up 3-4 mushy bananas. It was gross but I accomplished it. I was proud of myself. I'd conquered the bananas and turned them into this lovely smelling loaf of yummy goodness that I actually loved. The smell filled my house and even my kids mentioned that something was smelling REALLY good in the kitchen! I was so proud of myself and I dare say that my banana bread now tops my mother in laws. Sounds like a challenge is the cards! :)

Here's the recipe for all of you that need a good one. I can't remember for the life of me where I got it but it's really good and REALLY easy! Happy baking everyone!

Banana Bread Recipe: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place oven rack to middle position. Butter and flour (or spray with a non stick vegetable/flour spray) the bottom and sides of a 9 x 5 x 3 inch (23 x 13 x 8 cm) loaf pan. Set aside.
Place the nuts on a baking sheet and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly toasted. Let cool and then chop coarsely.
In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nuts. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl combine the mashed bananas, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, lightly fold the wet ingredients (banana mixture) into the dry ingredients just until combined and the batter is thick and chunky. (The important thing is not to over mix the batter. You do not want it smooth. Over mixing the batter will yield tough, rubbery bread.) Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake until bread is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool and then remove the bread from the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature. This bread can be frozen.
Makes 1 - 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf.

Banana Bread Recipe:
1 cup (115 grams) walnuts or pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped (optional)
1 3/4 cups (230 grams) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 ripe large bananas (approximately 1 pound or 454 grams), mashed well (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


mama hall said...

YUM! I hear ya on brown mushy bananas. Ick.
I'm going to try the recipe ASAP :) Thanks!

Dani said...

hey Eryn!! thanks for reading!! yes, try the recipe. it's really good :) i just fb'd you LOL

Martha said...

Uh, yeah. Ditto on the banana hating thing. I can eat them now but only if I don't think about it too much and that took a looong time to get to. I couldn't IMAGINE liking banana bread until I baked Granny's recipe. Now the kids can't get enough (me either). It is gone in one day. No lie. Two loaves. Three kids. And my recipe is slightly different from yours. A whole tsp of baking soda. And overbeating never makes it rubbery for me. The structure develops from the gluten in the flour when you beat it. So I'm not sure how you got rubbery bread. Anyway, the BEST thing is when you add just a little bit of those really tiny chocolate chips. Not the big ones because they just sink to the bottom when you're baking. But the tiny ones. TO DIE FOR.

And here's a spoiled banana trick. I just throw the brownish ones in the freezer. Sometimes I have whole piles of them. But then when you're ready to bake you take 2 out (I usually only use two) and stick them in the microwave for about 15 seconds. Then, and look away if it makes you sick, you just kinda peel off the outside and squirt (yes) the innards into a glass two cup measuring cup. Then I use one beater on the electric hand mixer to mix it all up before I put it into the bowl. That makes sure there's no big pieces of frozen banana hunking together. It's quick. And it's real funny when strangers come over and open my freezer and see loads of black bananas... hee hee!

Mariangela said...

you're too funny. I never thought about them like that. they take away leg cramps when you're growing. I guess I didn't eat a lot of bananas though..

Dani said...

@Martha CHOCO CHIPS SOUND SO GOOD!!! Def will make it like that next time! I never even thought of freezing them either. I have 2 sitting on my counter right now and I'm going to freeze those bad boys! @Mari I never did either. I think they probably always grossed me out LOL!

Dani said...

@Martha CHOCO CHIPS SOUND SO GOOD!!! Def will make it like that next time! I never even thought of freezing them either. I have 2 sitting on my counter right now and I'm going to freeze those bad boys! @Mari I never did either. I think they probably always grossed me out LOL!

We Three Smiths + 1 said...

I found your blog! Love it! I love this post..ha! Ryder was using our bananas as a phone on Thursday. I fed Rustin the last one and then Ryder was upset that I gave his banana phone away!

I also add chocolate chips to my banana bread...and pumpkin bread! It is sooooo Yummy! Thanks for sharing this recipe!!!

Dani said...

@Joy so happy you found it!!! I'm making BB today! Will add those choco chips :)See you soon!