Sunday, December 7, 2008

TastyKate Loaded Banana Bread

Since moving to Boston I have had several unsuccessful attempts at banana bread and/or muffins. I don't know if it is just a matter of getting used to the gas oven or not using all-purpose (white) flour anymore. Today my poor banana muffin streak came to an end, using a recipe from the Complete Cooking Light Cookbook (go figure!) for inspiration.

I love lots of "stuff" in my banana bread. I think it keeps the mixture moist and I love the texture of nuts, coconut, dried fruit, etc. The proportions in this recipe were great -- and I hope that I will be able to replicate in the future!

TastyKate's Loaded Banana Bread/Muffins
(adapted from Mom's Banana Bread Recipe in Cooking Light)

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 (mine were large) ripe bananas
1/4 cup fat free milk
1/4 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups white whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
dash nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups of oats, dried sweetened coconut, walnuts, diced dried apricots, jumbo plump raisins, raw pumpkin seeds, even chocolate chips.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Beat sugar and butter until well-blended. Add other "wet" ingredients -- banana, milk, cream, eggs, vanilla -- and beat well.
3. Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt together (sprinkle nutmeg on top).
4. Add "wet" ingredients to dry ingredients and fold mixture together until all dry ingredients are incorporated. Try not to overmix!
5. Add in mix-ins and continue to fold until incorporated throughout the batter.
6. Pour batter (I used an ice-cream scoop) into lightly greased muffin pan and 1 mini-loaf pan (or 1 large 9-inch loaf pan).
7. Bake muffins for about 20 minutes, mini-loafs for 40 minutes, regular loaf for 1 hour.
8. Let cool, remove from pan, and enjoy!

Cooking Light suggested -- low-fat sour cream, 1/4 cup butter (I would then add 1/4-1/2 cup applesauce if using a smaller amount of butter), and 2 egg whites rather than whole eggs.

If you try this -- let me know how it turns out!