Whole Wheat Banana Bread

There is almost never a dearth of blackening bananas on our dining table. Just like there’s never good news when it’s appraisal time. Ok that’s the worst analogy ever but couldn’t contain my “Outsourced under-paid Indian employee” anguish. It’s that time of the year when you hear the words “Ownership”, ”Visibility”, ”Initiative” bouncing around your office corridors and you know that soon you’ll get what is widely called a “hike” which you won’t notice unless you look really hard and with which you can’t even settle your tea-kadai account. This time he might just give me a ten rupee note from his pocket as my hike. You can never say. I am not looking forward to it. I’ll take a slightly lesser paid samayal-kari (cook) job if there is one. Let me know if you know one (but not on linkedIn, I may not even get the 10 rupee). Back to the bananas. There are at-least a couple of them in various stages of over-ripeness and nobody at home even bothers to toss them into the bin, usually. But remember I am notoriously unlucky with things like these. The one day that I look up a banana recipe, mentally check all the ingredients and come home dreaming of baking some banana goodness, I find that somebody has suddenly become over-responsible and has thrown away my precious over-ripe bananas. I cannot go to the potti-kadai and ask for over-ripe bananas. Already word is out that I am a crazy nut who asks for funny sounding ingredients (try asking for Badam Pisin with a straight face; I can’t). The point behind all this is you need really ripe bananas to make good banana bread. The rest is trivial. This whole wheat banana looks more like a plum cake because of the dark brown sugar in it. It smells heavenly when it bakes and is remarkably soft and light for a whole wheat bread. I was hasty and did not let it cool fully before shoving it in the fridge. The resultant condensation I think makes it look a bit denser that it originally was. The original recipe in Maida Heatter’s book also had walnuts in it. I skipped it as my kids don’t dig nuts. But if you have walnuts, chop them and fold them in at the last moment before popping the pan into the oven. Bananas and walnuts are classic...

Banana Bread

I like bananas a lot and so does my son but we still end up with a lot of over-ripe bananas. This banana bread is a lovely way to use over-ripe bananas. In fact the recipe requires bananas to be as ripe as possible. I used the yellow variety of bananas and they were quite ripe. I removed the black seeds in the centre as I wanted a clearer crumb. You could include the seeds as well if you don’t mind a darker, more spotted looking crumb. I used the recipe from two peas and a pod. Some fruits are so delicious on their own that no dish does justice to it. This is definitely true about mangoes. Mangoes are so luscious, so supremely tasty on their own that I really wouldn’t ever prefer mango mousse or Slice to it.  But there are some recipes that bring out the best of the fruit in a beautiful new avatar. Banana bread is one such recipe, which takes the bananas and transforms it into a wonderfully banana-scented, moist, crumbly bread that tastes like, well bananas. I am calling it a bread but it really is so soft and moist, it should be called a banana loaf cake. This banana bread needs no adornment whatsoever. Just slice and serve. If you’d like to glamorize it for a dinner party, just serve topped by a scoop of vanilla ice-cream. Super-easy dessert! This banana bread keeps well for a few days in the refrigerator. I packed it for my daughter’s snack box. My kids loved it and so did the rest of my family.     Prep time: 15 minsCooking time: 1 hourServes: 6-7 Ingredients Butter – 1/2 cup, softenedGranulated sugar – 1 cupEggs – 2 largeMashed bananas (I used 5 small yellow ones) – 1 cupButtermilk – 4 tbsp Vanilla extract – 1/2 tspAll-purpose flour – 1 – 3/4 cupsBaking powder – 1 tspSalt – 1/4 tspBaking soda – 1/8 tsp Method 1.      Grease and flour 1 large loaf pan 2.      Sieve together flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda twice. Set aside. 3.      In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together, for about 3-4 minutes. Add eggs, beat well after each addition. Add the mashed bananas, buttermilk and vanilla and mix well. 4.      Add the flour and mix well until you see no traces of flour. The batter would be quite thick. Spoon the...
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