Believe it or not, I wasn’t always a cooking fanatic for the majority of my life thus far. Until I moved out of my parent’s house, I wasn’t up for much of anything involving the kitchen. Very rarely would you find me cooking anything, unless if it was boiling a pot of pasta or frying eggs for breakfast. I guess it just didn’t click with me until I was able to buy my own groceries and use my own appliances in my own kitchen. However, one thing you could always count on me doing — no matter what kitchen I’m in — was baking. Mostly sweets, of course: brownies, cookies, cakes. But sometimes cute little snacks: stuffed baby peppers, roasted cauliflower, sometimes a frozen quiche or two. But something my Mom could always count on me making without complaint was banana bread. Anytime we had some leftover bananas that ripened past the point of peeling and eating, I knew what I’d be doing for the day. Coming out of an ABC cookbook with the letter “B” being — you guessed it — bananas, that tradition has still continued to our new home, and I hope to continue on to my own children one day.
● 3/4 cup granulated sugar
● 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (3 large)
● 3/4 cup vegetable oil
● 2 eggs
● 2 cups all-purpose flour
● 1 teaspoon baking soda
● 2 teaspoons almond extract
● 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1. B is for Banana Bread. As you can see to the right, I wasn’t joking about this recipe coming from a little ABC cookbook. And I guarantee as much as that ape is savoring his banana, so too will you love this bread. Begin by preheating the oven to 325 degrees and greasing a loaf pan that will be used to form the dough into our bread mold.
2. Mixing the Ingredients. First, unpeel all three bananas and place them in a bowl. With a fork, start mashing up each banana until you have a bowl of — for lack of a better word — much. It may look like a bunch of baby food, but it’s the absolute best part of the dish, of course. Once you get past the strange look of mashed up bananas, place them in a bigger bowl and add the other wet ingredients. This includes the granulated sugar, vegetable oil and eggs. Incorporate these ingredients well together so everything is consistent. Now that the wet ingredients are together, begin adding the dry ingredients — flour, baking soda and baking powder. You can also add the almond extract at this point to top it off. You’ll notice the wet ingredients start to thicken now that the flour has been added, which gives you a nice dough-like texture but more wet than stiff.
3. Baking. Pour the mixture into a greased loaf pan. The book says a 9x5x3 or 8.5×4.5×2.5 will do just fine. Really, I think any medium-size loaf pan will work. Once the oven is heated to 325 degrees, place the pan on a middle rack and set the timer to 60 minutes. You’ll notice the loaf is cooked through when it rises almost to the top of the pan and turns golden brown in color. To make sure, stick a butter knife down the middle of the bread, and if it comes out clean, you’re good to go. Let the bread cool about 10 minutes before taking it out of the pan. It should slide out easily enough, but you may need to loosen the edges with a knife.
And there you have it. This bread can be enjoyed as a light breakfast, quick snack or delicious dessert. Eat it plain or pair it with butter or jelly for an added flavor. However you decide to eat this banana bread, you’ll be sure to enjoy. Bon Appetite!