Sunday, February 13, 2011

A New Favourite

For years my favourite recipe for banana bread came from The Joy of Cooking. Moist, with a fantastic banana flavour, easy to put together; no reason to look elsewhere. Until now.

A recent Home Plates column had not one but two recipes for banana bread; specifically banana-orange bread. Sometimes one comes across recipes that you want to try right away. This was one such recipe. I even had three bananas well on their way to that ugh-I-can't-possibly-eat-that stage which is perfect for banana bread. Firmly ignoring the twinge of disloyalty I felt towards the recipe I'd used for years, I started to preheat the oven.

Picture courtesy my daughter.

As always I made some minor changes to the original recipe: what to do, I'm like that only.
I never tire of saying that and the kids invariably cringe in embarrassment when I do. All the more reason for me to keep saying that!

Here is the recipe with my changes:
Banana-Orange Bread

1 ½ cups sugar
5 tbsp vegetable oil
2 eggs
3 largish bananas (yielding about 1 ½ cups mashed)
¾ cup orange juice
3 cups flour (I used 1 ½ cup all purpose flour + 1 ½ cup whole wheat flour)
½ tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp salt
1 cup finely chopped walnuts (pecans ok too)
2 tbsp orange zest (packed)
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Grease two 8x4-inch loaf pans and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 325F.
Using a food processor, mash the banana.
Transfer the banana-mush to another bowl.
In the same food processor bowl (rinsing not necessary), combine the sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla extract.
Mix well, till slightly light in colour.
With the motor running add in the banana-mush and the orange juice.
Add the dry ingredients and mix till well combined.
Add the nuts and again mix well.
Divide the batter between the loaf pans.
Place the pans in the center of the oven and bake for about 50 minutes or till a toothpick inserted in the center of the pan comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then transfer the loaves to a cooling rack.

Such a lovely loaf!
This recipe makes two generous sized loaves. I was worried that the loaves would turn out dry, given the baking time and the considerable quantity of the batter in the pan, but I was wrong. But, next time I'll definitely divide all this batter into three.
I'll also significantly increase the quantity of the orange zest or skip the orange zest altogether and instead add a handful of chocolate chips.
If one makes three loaves from this recipe, you have less than one egg/ loaf. Immensely veganisable.

If you have any questions or comments, please write to me for stopping by.
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