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Banana Bread

Courtesy of Deirdre Reid and her blog “Grabbing the Gusto”

Bananas are a staple in my kitchen. Great for potassium. And peanut butter, banana and honey sandwiches. And topping a bowl of cereal. But the last two of the bunch are sometimes too ripe by the time I’m ready to eat them. And this means banana bread! I smoosh them up with a fork and put them in a container in the frig (or freezer) until I’m ready to bake.

I’ve been using this recipe from Cooking Light for a long time. It’s supposedly “light” but I think that will depend on how many slices you have. I’ve made some changes to the recipe that I’ve put in parentheses.

Classic Banana Bread

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (or 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup whole wheat flour)
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • (1 teaspoon cinnamon)
  • 1 cup sugar (or ½ cup sugar and ½ brown sugar)
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas, about 3 bananas
  • 1/3 cup plain low-fat yogurt or low-fat sour cream (or vanilla yogurt)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • (3/4 cup toasted chopped walnuts or pecans)
  • Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon, stirring with a whisk.

Beat sugars and butter in a mixer until well-blended. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana, yogurt and vanilla. Beat until blended. Add flour mixture, beat at low speed just until moist. Fold in nuts.

Put batter into loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on rack. Remove from pan and cool completely. This usually doesn’t happen – it’s too tempting to have a warm slice.

This weekend I added 2 cups of bananas because that’s what I wanted to use up and the excess caused the bread to have a moist banana-y center which is fine but that texture may not appeal to everyone.

This bread freezes well wrapped in plastic, then foil and placed in a freezer bag. Sometimes I’ll cut a loaf in half before freezing so that I only have to defrost a little at a time.

What else do you do with your over-ripe bananas? I sometimes freeze chunks for smoothies, but that’s about the only other idea I have.

For more foodie insight and delicious recipes, visit Deirdre’s site at Grabbing the Gusto.

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