We ended up with 4 extra ripe bananas (as usual, here in Hawaii), so I baked the Blue Ribbon Banana Bread on page 115 of Another Taste of Aloha under Breads – it was so light and airy with silky banana bits! I bake a lot of banana bread, and this may be my new go-to recipe – not too many ingredients, and only three mixing steps. I made one loaf and one pan of muffins, and the edges were crispy-caramelly with a fluffy interior, and the bits of banana inside were creamy with a lovely rich banana flavor – we loved it!
There were a few aha! moments in this recipe for me. Whenever I bake, I always cream the butter with the sugar for a few minutes first before adding any other ingredients, so I was skeptical about putting the eggs, oil, butter, and sugar in all at once and beating for two minutes. But the resulting bread was so light and airy that I am converted! I even did half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour, like the recipe suggested, and it was still light. Pretty awesome.
The other aha! moment was with the bananas – I’ve never sliced them and let the mixer do the mashing; I always puree them or mash them by hand until smooth. But letting the mixer’s wire whisk mash the bananas resulted in tons of little banana bits, which baked up just beautifully and made great creamy pockets inside the bread – almost like a chocolate chip does in a cookie. Again, converted!
I’ll be trying the mango alternative soon! For now, these muffins will be my toasty breakfast for a few weeks.
The loaf and the muffins – great color, and check out those gorgeous yellow banana bits!
Blue Ribbon Banana Bread
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 cups flour (may use 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1 cup all-purpose)
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- pinch cinnamon
- 2 cups bananas, sliced and firmly packed
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups walnuts, chopped
Preaheat over to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pans. BEat eggs, oil, butter and sugar for 2 minutes. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Add bananas and vanilla, and mix until bananas are mashed. Add nuts. Pour into prepared pans and bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from pans immediately and cool on a wire rack.
Makes 2 loaves.
Note: For terrific mango bread, substitute 2 cups drained mangoes for the bananas and add 2 teaspoons cinnamon.
The first Hawaiians brought the Hawaiian banana plant to the islands from the South Pacific. It now grows wild in mountain valleys. Today the most common and most delectable varieties grown in Hawai’i are the Chinese, Bluefield, and the Brazilian Apple bananas. They grow in warm, moist areas and ripen year round, one bunch to a tree. Bananas are usually eaten raw but also may be cooked ripe or green, as substitute for white or sweet potatoes.
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