Saturday, August 28, 2010
Banana Bread with Style
When the weekend comes around I often look at some speckled bananas on the counter and wonder why do I continue to buy bananas and what am I going to make with these now. I almost always make my mom's banana bread recipe but tonight I was looking for something a little different. After browsing Cooks Illustrated for banana recipes I decided on a Macadamia Coconut Banana Bread, sounds tropical. As I go to the cabinet that houses the macadamia nuts I don't see the bag where it usually sits. I pull over a chair to stand on to get a better look, still no macadamia nuts. So a minor setback no macadamia nuts, but I have been handling setbacks well all day. I was in BJ's earlier and Francis had to use the restroom, while in there someone swiped my cart, minor setback but I was irritated. So the nut thing is really no big deal, I have pecans.
I learned something new while reading this recipe. Often recipes call for just prepping the bottom of the pan, I always wondered why thinking the rest of the cake/bread will be stuck while the bottom isn't. The tip in the recipe said that if you prep the sides of the pan your cake/bread won't rise as high in the center. Thanks to Cooks Illustrated for the reason behind leaving the sides ungreased.
I don't know know how you may feel about coconut but I love it. I know it is usually a love hate thing with most people. I am the only one in my house that likes, more like loves coconut. When we go out for an ice cream treat with the boys and the ice cream shop has coconut ice cream I would be willing to bet that is what I am going to have. Tim thinks I get it just because I don't want to share a taste of my ice cream, that isn't it I really do LOVE coconut!
1/2 cup flaked, sweetened coconut
1 cup chopped macadamia nuts
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
3 very ripe bananas , soft, darkly speckled, mashed well (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup plain yogurt
2 large eggs , beaten lightly
6 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted and cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Toast coconut and macadamia nuts on small cookie sheet, stirring every 2 minutes, until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Readjust oven rack to lower middle position. Grease bottom only of regular loaf pan, or grease and flour bottom and sides of nonstick 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan; set aside. Combine first four ingredients, coconut, and nuts together in large bowl; set aside.
2. Mix mashed bananas, yogurt, eggs, butter, and vanilla with wooden spoon in medium bowl. Lightly fold banana mixture into dry ingredients with rubber spatula until just combined and batter looks thick and chunky. Scrape batter into prepared loaf pan; bake until loaf is golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 55 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.