The sense of smell can be extraordinarily evocative, bringing back pictures as sharp as photographs of scenes that had left the conscious mind.
~Thalassa Cruso, To Everything There is a Season, 1973
I'd like my boys to associated certain smells with their childhood. What better way to foster this memory maker than the smell of baking banana bread? It's beginning to become a tradition here. As soon as our bananas turn soft and brown... off we are baking again, and I never have a lack of baking assistants!
The Best Banana Bread
3/4 C butter softened
1.5 C sugar
3 bananas, blackened
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
2 C flour
3/4 tsp salt
1.5 C buttermilk
(if you don't have buttermilk you can use 1 tsp vinegar in a 1/2 cup measuring cup
and fill to the top with milk. Let this mixture set for 5 minutes before adding to the recipe)
1.5 C mini-chocolate chips (optional of course)
Cream butter and sugar (by hand or with a mixer). Mash bananas and add by hand to creamed mixture. By hand add eggs, vanilla, baking soda, flour and salt. Gently stir in buttermilk and chocolate chips. Pour into a greased loaf pan. Bake at 350 F for 1.25 hours or until it tests done with a toothpick. Coarsely mashing bananas is best, and make sure they are over ripe for best flavor. If you do the majority of mixing by hand it makes for a better texture in the end. You can make one large loaf with this recipe or 2-3 smaller loafs. I find making 2 smaller loafs cuts down the baking time considerably. Adjust baking time accordingly. Let rest before slicing.