I'm on the eternal quest for the perfect AND healthy banana nut bread recipe - the bread I baked for LisaBee's bachelorette party was pretty good, but I'm trying to make it even moister without having to use loads of butter, in fact I want *very* little butter. But I want it moist. And reasonably light. And flavorful. And nutty. Lofty aspirations, eh? :)
Well, this attempt was definitely a step in the right direction! In fact, this might be it! I might have to retire on this quest and move onto a different one :) The fun thing is that I've totally gotten back into baking - not sure if it was because of the plethora of frozen overripe bananas sitting in my fridge or my messing up of the last Pioneer Organics order that resulted in about 20 apples that I need to use up or just the fact that turning on the oven makes the house warmer :) Whatever be the reason, I'm loving it. And this time, I'm definitely loving the result!
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (another PCC discovery!)
1/2 cup of brown sugar
3 T honey
2 cups of super ripe mashed bananas (yes, I went overboard with the bananas, but it totally worked!)
2 T vegetable oil
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 t vanilla extract
1 t salt
1 T baking soda
2 large eggs (or egg substitute :))
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350 F and grease a 9x5 loaf pan.
Beat the oil, sugar, baking soda, salt cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla in a bowl until smooth.
Beat in the eggs one at a time (or, like in this case, the egg substitute - 1/4 cup at a time).
Next come the bananas and honey. By now, the mixture should be smooth and creamy.
Now start adding the flour, about 1/2 cup at a time, folding it in till blended.
Finally toss in the nuts and mix.
Now pour the batter into the greased pan and let it sit for about 10 minutes. I picked up this hint from one of my fave books on baking Whole Grain Baking that my sis turned me onto. Letting the batter sit seems to result in a much moister, fluffier bread - that makes me happy! :)
Ok, now stick the pan in the oven for 45 minutes. Lay a piece of foil over the pan and let it bake for another 10 minutes.
Now do the usual does-the-toothpick-come-clean? thing - Not done yet? Don't panic! It might take a few more minutes in the oven to get the inside completely done :)
Once done, let the cake cool in the pan for 10-12 minutes before tipping it onto a cooling rack.
Slice it. Taste it.
Wooo Hooo Hoooo!!!! This is good, really good! I feel like I've finally hit that balance I wanted - I had tried this with several substitutes - apple sauce made it too dry, sour cream made it too heavy, but this buttermilk thing seems to have worked great, even with the egg substitute! And the cinnamon+nutmeg was the perfect amount of spice to complement the banana+honey flavors!
Ok, I'm shipping this off to Baking History's Bread Baking Day #04 as my submission for 'Bread and Spices' :)