Thursday, April 14, 2011

Banana bread

The house smells divine and here's the culprit...

Today I made banana bread to bring to work tomorrow. I hadn't tried this recipe before but it had so many good reviews so I decided to go for it (mostly because I had all the ingredients on hand).

I thought it turned out well. The taste was fantastic. The texture was only okay. I like my banana bread pretty dense and this wasn't as dense as I like. It was more like the density of a heavy whole grain bread. If you like a lighter banana bread, definitely give this a try.

After work I went to find a mini loaf pan for my banana bread. I love making things in "mini" sizes, there are just so many great things about it! 
Why I think baking the mini version is awesome...
1) Mini = cute
2) Mini cooks faster
3) It's easier to tell when mini things are done
4) Mini things package easily for gifts
5) By making things mini, it gives you a better opportunity to test out the finished product before serving it to other people (HUGE bonus)

I plan to post more awesome mini recipes in the future, but back to my mini banana bread. Here is the recipe I used. It is based off of this one from (here).

Banana Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups mashed very overripe bananas

The changes I made were that the recipe called for 2 1/3 cups of bananas and no vanilla. My 4 bananas only yielded 2 cups. And I added vanilla because I like the flavor.

First I preheated the oven to 350 degrees. Then I got everything ready to go: dry ingredients in a large bowl, butter and sugar in another, and eggs and bananas on deck.

Next I creamed the butter sugar until smooth.
 After that I stirred in the eggs, bananas, and vanilla. Then added the wet ingredients to the dry ones and stirred just until everything was incorporated.

 Next I used a 1/3 cup measuring cup to fill the bread molds. This would have been a perfect application for a traditional ice cream scoop but I only have the cookie size. But this seemed to work well. I just used a spoon to divide any remaining batter among the molds.

Into the oven... The original directions said that it would take 60-65 minutes for a loaf.

I started checking for doneness after about 15 minutes. All in all it took about 25 minutes for these guys to cook.
And they came out beautifully.

After a couple minutes I moved them to a rack to finish cooling. They came out of the baking pan without a fight.

I sliced up seven of the loaves to bring to work tomorrow.

And I may have snuck a piece to see how it turned out. Mmmm

And I even packaged the remaining two up. I was inspired by these adorable muffin liners I got on clearance from Michael's last week. So cute!! I brought one to another neighbor and have the other sitting in the fridge.

Tonight I also decided to doll up my muffins from last night. Wasn't sure they could get cuter, but I think I did it! I'll post about that tomorrow so stay tuned :-)

Until then, have a great Friday everyone!

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