Saturday, July 26, 2014

Nana Nutter Bread

I've been meaning to make this banana bread for several weeks since I've been craving a warm slice of banana bread. It's one of my favorite desserts and it's just so simple to make. I've been purposely buying a few more bananas than usual when I go grocery shopping, but the banana eaters in my house have been doing a good job of getting to them before they've been ripe enough to bake with. It's alright with me, but it's just delayed my plans to make this banana bread until recently.

Peanut butter and banana is one of my favorite combos and I don't think I could ever get tired of peanut butter and banana sandwiches. I prefer smooth peanut butter on bread, but I happened to have a jar of extra crunchy peanut butter in the pantry. So, it's been a constant reminder to try out this recipe during my banana gathering journey the last couple of weeks. If you don't have crunchy peanut butter, smooth would also work.

The recipe is one I've had bookmarked ever since I flipped through Baked Elements by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito many months ago. Then I saw it again here. It's the first recipe I've tried of theirs and I can absolutely understand what the fuss is about now. I was afraid it would be too sweet with the peanut butter, bananas, and sugar, but it was perfect. I did leave out the chocolate chips though. The peanut butter flavor is prominent but doesn't overtake the banana and the texture is just stunning textbook banana bread. The picture above doesn't do it justice since I just had to cut into it before it cooled enough. I only have an 8.5 by 4.5 inch loaf pan, so my banana bread got a little darker than expected, but the crunchy top part was my sister's favorite part.

Peanut Butter Banana Bread
Adapted from Baked Elements
Makes one 9x5 inch loaf

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp kosher salt, half the amount of fine table salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 heaping cup of mashed bananas, about 3 medium bananas
1/2 cup vegetable/canola oil
2 large eggs
1/4 cup whole milk
1 cup peanut butter, crunchy or smooth

Preheat the oven to 350 deg F. Butter and flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan or line with parchment paper. Sift the flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together in a medium bowl, set aside.

In a large bowl, mix the eggs a bit before adding in the bananas, oil, milk, and peanut butter. Mix thoroughly for a few minutes until combined. Fold the flour mixture into the wet ingredients until just combined.

Transfer the batter to the loaf pan and bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Start checking at about an hour. Let the banana bread cool for about 15 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Banana bread will last well wrapped at room temp for a few days.

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