Saturday, December 19, 2015

Ultimate Banana Bread

I really like banana bread. My biggest complaint about it is the lack of banana flavor. I've tried to put more fruit in, but the bread becomes too hard to eat. I basically gave up on having banana-flavored banana bread, until, I saw America's Test Kitchen's video "Ultimate Banana Bread". I strongly urge you to watch it also. Here is my recipe from their video.

Ingredients

5 bananas, super ripe

Dry Ingredients
1 3/4 cups (220 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda

Wet Works
1 stick melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
3/4 cup brown sugar

Topping
2 teaspoons sugar
1 fresh banana

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°C. Prepare 8.5 x 4.5 loaf pan or 3 mini loaf pans with non-stick spray or parchment paper.
  2. What is the condition of your bananas?
    1. Room Temperature Bananas: Put 5 bananas in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Punch several venting holes. Microwave on high for 5 minutes. Remove the bananas and strain to separate the liquid.
    2. Frozen Bananas: Let 5 bananas defrost in the refrigerator. Strain the bananas from the liquid.
  3. Simmer the banana liquid over medium-high heat until reduced to about 1/4 C. About 5 minutes. Mash together the bananas and syrup. 
  4. While waiting for the banana syrup, in a larger mixing bowl, whisk eggs then slowly whisk in melted butter. Mix in the vanilla & brown sugar being careful to remove brown sugar lumps. Mix in bananas and syrup.
  5. In small bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, salt, and soda.
  6. Pour wet ingredients on top of dry ingredients. Fold together being careful not to over mix. Pour into prepared loaf pan(s).
  7. Optional topping ideas. Do either or combination.
    1. Slice a banana on the bias. Lay each half of it on the edges of the dough, keep the center free & uncovered. 
    2. Sprinkle sugar on top of the loaf. When it finishes baking, it creates a nice crust.
  8. Bake at 350° for 1 hour. Use toothpick to test for being done. Cool 15 minutes then remove from the pan. Cool completely before slicing.