Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Min's Favorite Banana Bread

A.K.A. Martha's Banana Bread, this is another of Martha Stewart's recipes, from The Martha Stewart Cookbook. It makes the best banana bread I've ever had.

Makes 1 large loaf or 4 small loaves. *I've noticed it typically makes more than one large loaf. That's okay since I like to freeze some. I'll tell you about that in a bit.

1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (I use about three bananas, and I don't mash them.)

1/2 cup sour cream (I heap this in the measuring cup)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan or several smaller pans.

With an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, beating well.

Sift the dry ingredients together and combine with the butter mixture. (does anyone ever do this? I just dump it all in.) Blend well. Add the bananas, sour cream and vanilla. Stir well. Stir in the nuts and pour into the prepared pan.

Bake 1 hour, until a cake tester (I call it a "knife") comes out clean. Turn out onto a rack to cool.

The only problem I have had with this recipe is that the bread tends to stick to the bottom of the pan, no matter how much I butter it and no matter whether I turn it out immediately or wait several minutes. I don't know if this has something to do with our altitude?

To freeze these loaves, let them cool completely. Then wrap them securely in aluminum foil and place in a ziploc freezer bag. Label and date, of course. I'm not sure how long these will last, we seem to eat them quickly.

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