I hate bananas, they’re probably my least favorite fruit. I don’t like banana flavored candy, or ice cream, but banana bread….now that’s a whole different animal. I LOVE banana Bread. I have had loaves that make me cringe, and others, like this one….that make me want to do heel kicks, run it into the other room and eat it ALL by myself. Especially with the little trick I learned a few years ago, which I’m sure basically everyone knows. But I’m still going to share it! Also, people sometimes use bananas that aren’t ripe enough and I just do not like the way it tastes! I buy a bundle of them and leave them on my counter until they are almost completely brown, then I bag them up and stick them in the freezer. On the day I’m going to bake, I pull out 3 big ones, or 4 smaller ones and set them in the sink to defrost. They work PERFECT, but they have to be super ripe and gross looking!
This recipe is straight from the Betty Crocker cookbook, except I substitute something for the buttermilk, since I never have that stocked at home….and I add a little something at the end that has been a game changer. My momma is the one who gave me these tips! So here goes:
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 1 – 1.25 hour
Makes 2 loaves, 24 slices each.
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup stick margarine or butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas(I use 3 large bananas)
1/2 cup buttermilk (I use 1/4 cup sour cream and 1/4 cup half & half instead)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped nuts, if desired(I don’t use nuts)
- Move oven rack to low position so that tops of pans will be in center of oven. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottoms only of 2 loaf pans, 8 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 2 1/2 inches, or 1 loaf pan, 9 x 5 x 3 inches(which is what I use), with shortening.
- Mix sugar and margarine in large bowl. Stir in eggs until well blended. Put bananas, vanilla, and the sour cream and half & half into batter and mix in. Beat until smooth. In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together, then stir mixture until just moistened. Stir in nuts(I never do). Pour into pans. THE IMPORTANT PART: Sprinkle sugar all over the top of the batter before you set in the oven. I really coat it, so I can’t see much batter, but I don’t do it thick, just a good covering.
- Bake 8-inch loaves about 1 hour, 9-inch loaf about 1 1/4 hours, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. I usually only bake my single loaf about an hour and seven minutes. I like my loaf to be very moist, and even the slightest bit raw in some areas, so I make sure the second my toothpick comes out clean I take it out. Start checking the loaf around an hour and 5 minutes. I can’t say when to check the double loaves. Cool 5 minutes in pans on wire rack. Loosen sides of loaves from pans; remove from pans and place top side up on wire rack. Cool completely before slicing. wrap tightly and store at room temperature.
Now about why the sugar on top is so amazing. It crystallizes while it bakes and makes the most DELICIOUS sweet crunchy top coat. I want to slice the top off, and eat it entirely by itself. I slice each piece, butter it, microwave it for 15 seconds and then enjoy a really delectable treat! Please try it and let me know what you think!