Thursday, August 28, 2008

Go bananas

The kids went back to school this week. I'm the one having the adjustment problems. I just hate having to coerce their warm, sleepy bodies out of bed in the morning, force something healthy down their throats then throw them into the car for the 2.5 mile drive to school. They approached the first day of school with excited apprehension; I approached it with anxiety.

Every year I shoot a picture of the kids by the front door right before we leave for school. Here's Thing 1 - with her typical level of enthusiasm. Thing 2 was agreeable. Eldest Daughter was unhappy to do this for a second year in a row.

The Return to School means that daily lunches must be packed. And the quest for healthy snacks begins all over again. I like banana bread so we bought bananas over the weekend with plans to make a loaf or two mid week. It's Thursday and the task is not yet completed because it's silly to heat up the kitchen when the thermometer outside still reads in the 90s. It's a good thing we've procrastinated, however, because one of my favorite bloggers just posted a new banana bread recipe. Clearly I'm not the only one with bananas on the brain this week.

I'm especially excited about this recipe because it's Bakesale Betty's. And I worship her shortcakes, which I used to be able to buy at our local Farmer's Market. Bakesale Betty, aka Alison Barakat, is a Chez Panisse alum. Around here, credentials don't get much better than that. I'll let you know how it is.

Banana Bread with Cinnamon Crumble Topping
Adapted from Bakesale Betty and Bon App├ętit, September 2008

For bread:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 3 medium bananas)
2 large eggs
½ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup honey
¼ cup water

For topping:
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 ½ tbsp. packed dark brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Butter and flour a 9- x 5-inch metal loaf pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk together the banana, eggs, oil, honey and water.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and stir well. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.In a small bowl, mix together the topping ingredients. Sprinkle them evenly over the batter.

Bake the bread until a tester inserted into its center comes out clean, about 1 hour, give or take a little. Cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Then carefully remove the bread from the pan, taking care not to dislodge the topping.

Cool completely before slicing.


Neeracha T. said...

Heat wave be damned, I went ahead and made this today. Note that you should really use the parchment liner - with butter and flour, it's near impossible to get the loaf out of the pan without losing half the topping. The kids gave this two thumbs up!

Kim said...

LOVE the Justice monkey shirt! AK is green with envy.