Humble, homey banana bread doesn’t get a lot of foodie glory, but there’s nothing I’d rather have with my afternoon coffee. In fact, it’s by far our family favorite sweet. We’ve tried lots of recipes, but I keep returning to this one. The bread –cake, really– is light and moist with the perfect salty-sweet balance, and the recipe is simple enough to commit to memory. Lately, Julia and I have enjoyed baking this together. She’s an expert banana masher.
(adapted from Martha Stewart Living, August 2004)
1/4 pound (113g, 1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
1 cup (237ml)sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups (355ml) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (237ml) mashed very ripe bananas (about 3 bananas, but measure the mash)
1/2 cup (118ml) sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup (118ml) chopped pecans or walnuts
1. Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Butter a 9″x 5′”x 3″ (approx. 23cm x1 13cm x 8cm) loaf pan.
2. Mash up the bananas with a fork, whisk, pastry blender or anything else you enjoy mashing with.
2. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until it’s pale yellow and fluffy.
3. Add the eggs and beat to incorporate
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the butter mixture and mix until just combined.
5. Add the bananas, sour cream, and vanilla. Mix to combine. Mix in the nuts.
6. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for about 70 minutes, until a tester inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
7. Let rest for about 10 minutes before turning out on a rack to cool.