I had some bananas that were ripening faster than I expected, so I decided to bake some banana bread.
Did you know that banana bread was invented during the Great Depression in the 1930s when frugal homemakers needed to find uses for overly ripe or even rotting bananas? Plus, baking soda and baking powder were now being mass produced so quick bread recipes were all the rage.
As the decades progressed, so did the ingredients, and by now you can find dozens, if not hundreds of recipes for many variations of banana breads. They all sound delicious, but some of them seem just a little bit too involved.
I wanted something reasonably simple. You know, throw ingredients into a bowl, mix, pour into the bread loaf pan, bake.
As a plus, I found one that incorporated toasted pecans. I happen to love pecans and I had some on hand. Double plus.
The recipe called for buttermilk but allowed yogurt as a substitute, so I had all the ingredients on hand. Who could ask for anything more?
I used 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup olive oil.
Here’s the Banana Bread recipe.
1/2 cup melted unsalted butter or vegetable oil, plus more for greasing pan
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup toasted pecans, chopped
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup buttermilk or yogurt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 soft, very ripe, darkly speckled medium bananas, mashed (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 Preheat the oven to 350° F. Lightly butter one 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.
2 Whisk together the flour, pecans, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg in a large bowl. Whisk together the eggs, melted butter, buttermilk, brown sugar and vanilla in a medium bowl; stir in the mashed bananas. Fold the banana mixture into the flour mixture until just combined (it’s OK if there are some lumps).
3 Pour the batter into the buttered pan and lightly tap the pan on the counter to evenly distribute the batter. Bake until browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out completely clean, about 50 to 60 minutes. Let the bread cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
When the bread came out of the oven and was cooling on the counter it filled the whole room with a delicious aroma!