Saturday, January 24, 2009

Banana bread takes longer with a preschool-age sous chef

It may take twice as long to make, but it's at least twice as good. With a preschooler and a toddler in the house, we almost always have bananas in the fruit bowl -- which means we almost always have several of them frozen solid in the freezer. Which is perfect for making banana bread.

Several people have asked me for my recipe, so I thought I'd post it. I double this recipe to make three medium-size loaves plus a dozen mini-muffins (perfect for lunchboxes!). You can use a GFCF flour blend plus 2 teaspoons of Xantham gum, margarine, and soy or almond milk instead to make a gluten-free, casein-free version (plantain flour works especially well in this recipe).

Lylah's Banana Bread

4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas (about 3 large or 4 medium bananas)
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups flour (you can sub whole wheat for 1/2 a cup, if you like)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a loaf pan or muffin tin with non-stick spray.
  2. In a large bowl or using a stand mixer, cream together the butter, oil, and sugars.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well to incorporate.
  4. Add the mashed bananas, milk, and vanilla. Mix well.
  5. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add it all at once to the wet ingredients (if you're using a stand mixer, remove the bowl and mix the dry ingredients in by hand, otherwise your banana bread will be tough), and mix until just combined -- do not overmix!
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for about 50 to 55 minutes (15 for mini muffins, about 30 for regular-size muffins) or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.

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