The Quest For The Best – Banana Bread

Here we go, and so another week starts!

How was everyone’s weekends? Mine was low-key. I am still dealing with this kink in my neck, which I am now convinced might actually be a muscle tear. Or death. Depends on the Google search. The left side of my neck, chest, and shoulder is swollen and my veins are popping out. I’ve been doing the Shaquile O’Neal Icy Hot technique, with lots of anti-inflammatory medications and muscle relaxers to make me pass out at night.

On the bright side, it’s taken the focus off the pain in my arm!

Anyways, as y’all know, I love to spend my weekends baking and creating in the kitchen. The other day, I impulsively bought eight overripe bananas on sale at the grocery store with visions of banana-y creations in my head.

I briefly thought about the whacky concoctions I could try with the black bananas. But the pain in my neck wasn’t really keen on doing a lot of standing, mixing, and one-armed lifting. I then remembered my quest to find the best banana bread recipe, and figured this was as good a time as any to continue in that quest.

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You see, I’ve been baking banana bread since I was in middle school. For a long time, cookies and banana bread were all I could ever bake. In all this time, I’ve never been able to produce what I deem the “perfect” loaf. A banana loaf as good as the ones bought fresh from bakeries and cafes. I just couldn’t figure out their secret.

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I’ve read up a lot on the subject of banana breads. Many swear by using sour cream, others insist on a glaze or sugary coating over the crust. Some use juice, walnuts, or say the ripeness of the bananas is key.

Well, I think I have discovered what makes a perfect loaf for me. The kind of loaf that is dark in colour but light in texture. Full of flavour without being too full of sugar.

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The answer? BANANAS. And lots of ‘em.

Most banana bread recipes only call for two bananas, which makes for a loaf where you can hardly even taste them.

This time around, I used four bananas per loaf and it was bursting with banana flavour. I didn’t fully mash the bananas either so there are little chunks of bananas weaved throughout the bread.

I used this banana muffin recipe. The only thing I changed was that I turned it into a loaf and baked for 45-50 min. I also left the sugar topping off out of pure laziness, but I will probably add it next time.

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I think my quest may be over. No fancy ingredients or techniques required. Just plain ole’ bananas to make a stellar banana bread recipe. Plus, it’s dead simple, and in no way an extra pain in the neck ;)

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Posted on June 20, 2011, in Baking, Recipes. Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. Oh you did a great job on the banana bread!

    When I make it, I’ve been adding PB to it. Not really traditional but it sure is good. I would give anything to have my grandma make me some of her banana bread but that’s impossible but the memories are delish.

    I need to try this recipe b/c i know you’re a tough critic :)

  2. OK now I’m a bit worried: a kink in the neck is one thing, but swelling/popping veins is another. Can you hit your doc’s today?

    I LOVE bananas and always buy too many (so I freeze them for smoothies). I’ll head over to your link now.

    • I’m seeing my physiotherapist for my arm today, so I’m going to get her opinion on it first. I spend SO much time at the hospital, getting x-rays, and talking to doctors, I really don’t have the time to deal with another ailment!

  3. Mmm, looks good! I developed a gluten-free banana bread a couple weeks ago that I was really happy with, including a whole lotta banana as well. It’s key for moisture and flavor!

  4. My weekend was pretty low-key too.

    My mom has one of the best banana bread recipes! She always made it special when I was younger so whenever she makes it now it takes me back to my childhood. Baking brings such great memories!

  5. Hey Susie,

    The banana bread you left your Mom and me was awesome…just like my Mom makes and that is gooooood !!! Don’t change a thing.

    Mark

  6. greensandjeans

    Bananas are DEFINITELY the key to good banana bread! I always put in at least two more than the recipe calls for!

  7. That looks amazing! I recently made some banana bread and it inspired me to try it again with some creative changes…mmmm!

  8. That looks insanely delicious. Have you tried adding sour cream and/or walnuts?

  9. More bananas! Here is a vegan banana bread recipe a friend gave me (she got it from fatfree.com)–I’m not even vegan, but it is simple, delicious and full of banana flavor!
    Banana Bonanza Bread

    6 (yes, 6) very ripe bananas (a bit overripe is fine)
    1 c. sugar
    1 tsp. vanilla
    2 c. all purpose flour
    1 tsp baking soda
    1 tsp baking powder
    cinammon to taste

    In one bowl, mash the bananas until smooth (we like it a bit chunky) and
    add the sugar and vanilla, blending until incorporated.
    In anoter bowl, mix the dry ingredients until well blended and add to
    the bananas. Mix these thoroughly. Pour this into a 9X13 glass baking
    dish (no need to spray) or a regular loaf pan (spray a THIN coat of
    baking spray). Bake at 350 for an hour.

  10. Yum. I love banana bread! My mom’s recipe is my favorite.. I ate a bunch of it just yesterday.

  11. That plate looks like it just might be the best breakfast/snack/lunch ever. I love banana bread- go figure the solution to your quest would be something so simple!

  12. I love banana bread. I have a thing for undercooked bread, no clue why. But because of the banana’s texture it adds that under cook feel to it. So, I absolutely adore it.

  13. Thanks for sharing the secret. Looks like the most perfect breakfast ever. :)

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