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Monday, January 27, 2014

Flour's Banana Bread

The other day, the girls and I were shopping at The Fresh Market and Alexis was, as always, on a mission to cram as many sweets as possible into our cart.  It certainly doesn't help that The Fresh Market's giant confectionary aisle is right in the middle of the store and all roads from dairy to veggies lead to it.  In fact, Alexis just dashes straight to the "right" location as soon as she crosses the doorway to the store, letting me do my sensible shopping across the perimeter.  

Besides the sweets, Alexis's other interest is samples.  Really, of anything, but preferably of something sweet.  This time, she navigated through the candy aisle and the bakery and found none.  She loudly demanded samples.  She even suggested that I break open some particularly intriguing-looking packages so she can have a taste of what's inside.  

Finally, at the checkout, the cashier brightly said to the girls:  "Would you like to try a sample of our banana bread?"   Alexis's eyes lit up:  "Is it with chocolate chips?!?!"  The cashier replied with a smile:  "No.  But it has nuts!"   Alexis wailed in dismay:  "Nuts?!   I hate nuts!!  I love chocolate chips!!"  Seeing that we were at an impasse, I promised her that I will bake her a banana bread as soon as we get home, with chocolate chips and with no nuts (the latter was not true, since I put omega 3s into everything).   The cashier was so glad that the yelling stopped that she didn't even seem to judge my parenting technique.

When we got home, I made the Flour Bakery's banana bread.  The recipe can be found here.   Flour is a famous bakery in Boston, owned by Joanne Chang, an alumna of Harvard with a degree in economics, who apparently has a pretty big sweet tooth and some serious baking skills.  Flour Bakery has four locations in Boston and two recipe books, Flour and Flour, Too.  Although the recipe had no chocolate chips in it, I added some because otherwise my kids won't accept it as a passable banana bread.  This one, though, was out of this world delicious and will be my go-to recipe from now on.

You will need:

  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup oil (I used extra virgin oil)
  • 3 1/2 bananas, very ripe, mashed (I let the mixer do the mashing)
  • 2 tbsp of creme fraiche or sour cream (I used sour cream)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped (I skipped the toasting)
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (my addition)
Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt into a bowl.   Set aside.

1 2/3 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon + 1/2 tsp salt

Beat sugar and eggs until fluffy, then drizzle in oil.

1 cup sugar + 2 eggs

1/2 cup oil
Add vanilla, sour cream, and bananas.

1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp of sour cream

3 1/2 very ripe bananas

Fold in dry ingredients, nuts, and chocolate chips.

Add dry ingredients that were set aside

2/3 cups chopped walnuts + 1 cup dark chocolate chips

Pour everything into a loaf pan (sprayed with a butter spray) and bake at 350 degrees until baked through (about 1 hour and 15 minutes).


1 comment:

  1. I'm with Alexis on the candy aisle! But now that I'm an adult and know about the evils of sugar overload, I try and limit the time I spend there to just longing glances. Occasionally, however, a bag of malted milk balls makes its way into my basket. Your banana bread looks amazing. I love the step by step pictures and instructions. Great blog!!