Thursday, September 10, 2009

Banana-Nut Bread

Normally, I am very careful to not let food go to waste. It's just one of those things that makes me kind of crazy. Produce is, of course, the number one food item that gets wasted. I try to only buy what I know I'll use. Except for bananas. When it comes to bananas, I often buy a couple extra with the intention of letting them get overripe. That way, I have a legitimate excuse to make yummy banana treats!

I loved this recipe. It had the perfect balance of sweetness from the bananas and spice from the cinnamon and nutmeg. The extra walnuts and sugar on top were a nice touch, as well. Normally I leave things like that off because it seems like one way, albeit tiny, to cut a few calories. (And yes, I realize I just referenced cutting calories in a post about banana bread.) But these mini loaves were for thank you gifts, so I wanted them to be pretty. They were a hit!

Banana-Nut Bread
slightly adapted from Williams-Sonoma, Essentials of Baking


2 large very ripe bananas
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. whole-wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. freshly-grated nutmeg

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 TBSP lemon or orange zest

3/4 c. toasted, chopped walnuts

2 large eggs

3/4 c. firmly packed dark brown sugar

6 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
1/2 c. 2% milk
Demerara or Turbinado sugar, for dusting (optional)
walnut halves, for decoration (optional)


1. In a dry skillet, toast walnuts until fragrant. Set aside to cool before chopping.

2. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour or spray one 9x5 loaf pan or three mini loaf pans.

3. In a small bowl, mash the bananas. You should have about 1 1/2 c.

4. In a medium bowl, stir together flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, citrus zest, and chopped walnuts. Set aside.

5. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine eggs, brown sugar, butter, and milk. Beat on medium-low speed until just blended.

6. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the bananas, and beginning and ending with the dry mixture. Do not overmix.

7. Pour the batter into prepared pan or pans and smooth the top. If desired, sprinkle Demerara or Turbinado sugar over the tops and stud with a lone of walnut halves.

8. If making one loaf, bake approximately 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. If the surface gets too brown, cover with foil for the last 15 minutes.
If making mini loaves, put the three pans on a baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes.

9. When done, remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool in the pans for five minutes. If making one loaf, turn out onto the wire rack after five minutes to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for two to three days or freeze for up to one month.

One year ago:
Korean barbecued beef


melslatt said...

Looks delicious - the sugar and the walnuts definitely make it look tempting!