Banana quick bread
The scorching summer and the dripping humidity of May takes a toll on everyone and everything. Refrigerators and air conditioners work overtime to please and comfort us. Food’s shelf lives shortens. Vegetables appear shrivelled and fruits are zapped off saps within few days of their purchase. Among all these are a bunch of dark looking bananas peeping out of the basket and beckoning me to use them. Yes, if there is one of the very few things about summers other than mangoes which excites me , its those rapidly riping bananas. This fruit is in its full glory when fully ripe and black, and is ideal for this reciepe. A banana though normally sweet, intensifies its flavours when it is totally ripened. So never throw away a fully ripe black skinned banana, instead wrap it in a polythene and stash it in your freezer. It makes for wonderful smoothies, shakes, cakes, breads etc. Summers for me also mean baking punctuated with power cuts and low voltage, sigh!!! You cannot have the banana and bake it too, isn’t it.
The word ‘quick bread’ is usually used to describe some fruit based breads like pumpkin and banana, which a leavening agent like soda to rise unlike the traditional breads which use yeast. Now why aren’t our cakes which also use baking soda called quick breads? Honestly I don’t know, I always thought the word bread is only used when we make a cake sort of thing from banana or pumpkin, and since I used the word bread, I had to bake it in a loaf pan. Dumb enough isn’t it? But when the end product is so delicious does it really matter if we call it bread or a cake or a muffin or cup cake or whatsoever?
I have taken this recipe from the very popular joy of baking’s kitchen , just added chocolate chips in it.
- All purpose flour- 1 ¾ cup
- Granulated sugar- ¾ cup
- Baking powder- 1 teaspoon
- Baking soda – ½ teaspoon
- Salt- ¼ teaspoon
- Ground cinnamon-1 teaspoon
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- Butter, melted and cooled – ½ cup (I used vegetable oil)
- 3 ripe large bananas mashed well (about 1-1½ cups
- almonds (sliced)- ¼ cup (optional)
- chocolate chips (dark)- ¼ cup (optional)
- vanilla extract- 1 teaspoon
• Preheat the oven to 180 degree C, grease and dust the loaf pan or baking tray.
• Combine flour, sugar,baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon powder.
• In another bowl combine mashed bananas, eggs, butter or oil and vanilla essence.
• With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon lightly fold in the wet ingredients (banana mixture) into the dry ingredients, until the batter is uniform and thick.Do not over mix.
• Fold in nuts and choco chips if using.
• Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.
• Bake until the bread turns golden brown and a toothpick inserted at the center of the cake comes out clean.
• Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack before slicing.