Thursday, November 17, 2011

Classic Banana Bread

Growing up, we only had one recipe for banana bread. It comes from the Good Housekeeping cookbook and it is phenomenal. Last December, I shared this recipe with all of you (you can read it right here). This year, I have a new recipe to share with you. My sister Erin found it from Cooking Light and likes it much more than our old recipe. I had to give it a shot because there is no harm in having a healthier version of something you love…especially a breakfast food. :)

First off, I noticed that there is no shortening and very little butter in this recipe. Remember, it’s a Cooking Light recipe. :) The next interesting ingredient is the use of plain low-fat yogurt. I didn’t have any of that in my fridge and really didn’t feel like going to the grocery store just to buy yogurt, so I improvised with plain non-fat Greek yogurt. The batter tasted just fine, but the texture was off in the first cooked piece I tried. The ends were a little dry and tough, but as my roommate Margaret and I worked towards the middle of the loaf, it was much, much better. Moist, delicious, and totally irrestible!

After consulting with Erin, we came to some possible reasons as to why it was more dry on the outside. First of all, maybe it needs more fat. I used non-fat Greek yogurt, not low-fat regular. Greek yogurt is thicker than regular, so that could have contributed to the toughness. The other possibility is that I over mixed the batter. Actually, that’s very probable. When you make this yourself, only mix until the flour is mixed in. Then stop. If you over mix your batter, your bread will be tough. Or it just was overcooked? The middle came to a very high peak, so it took a while to fully cook. I think the ends were done far before the middle.

Side note: Thanks for the tips, Erin. I probably should have talked to you before I made this loaf, not after!! I think I learned my lesson!

Anyway, the flavor of my loaf was still delicious, so I will definitely be making this bread again. Erin and I agree that the hardest part in making banana bread is waiting for the bananas to ripen. So, while you’re waiting for those bananas to ripe, do yourself a favor and stock up on the right ingredients for this delicious banana bread!

Classic Banana Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
¼ cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1½ cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
⅓ cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.
I love a reason to use my pretty purple whisk!
Place sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute).
I still can't get over the fact that there is only 1/4 cup of butter!!
Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
I like this pale yellow color. It's really calming...
Add banana, yogurt, and vanilla; beat until blended.
Remember to mash the bananas first!
I used Chobani Plain Non-Fat Greek Yogurt because it's my favorite to eat and always in my fridge!
Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist. Mix in walnuts. (Be careful not to over mix!!)
Probably over-mixed...haha.
Spoon batter into an 8½ x 4½-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.

That is going to make one big loaf of banana bread!
See how tall it is? And the edges are very dark. It took the full hour to bake.
Mmmm these slices were perfectly delicious. :)
Thanks for reading today! When I make this banana bread again, according to the original recipe, I will update all of you!

<3 Buttercup

1 comment:

  1. i love food which is good and doesn't make me feel guilty for eating it! If only those went hand in hand more often. Thanks for the good recommendation. i have been making the one from America's Test Kitchen lately, but I make it without sugar. (Not because I'm trying to be healthy. It's Garrett's favorite and he can't have sugar.) SO, I have very little to compare it too. I think perhaps I'll give this a try for me sometime. And of course, I'm going to take your sisters wonderful advice. No over mixing here!


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