I have not had a blog post in way too long, but all three of us are apparently on the same page with giving the blog a little bit of loving. A lot has gone on since the last time we were together on this here little blog. I moved out of my apartment of three years, went to Sydney and Thailand, moved into a new apartment, started my masters program and got the most adorable cat, Artemis, ever. I'm not technically allowed to have. Please, don't tell anyone.
I realize I just shared with the internet world that I'm housing a cat in no animal apartment, but I trust you not to tell. I'm pretty obsessed with her. I'm going to try my very best to not constantly talk about her. It has come to my attention that other people do not find her nearly as fascinating as I do, but I don't really care.
You see I have never had the privilege of having a little fur-ball companion of any sort before. It is sort of a big deal and I think I'm in love. Enough about my apparent transition to being a crazy cat lady and lets talk about banana bread.
Everyone loves banana bread and it is so easy to make. I have a tendency to make really simple things a little less simple, but what is five more minutes to add a little nutty buttery goodness to your banana bread? Its no big thing. Plus, we have all had the standard banana bread and should try something new. Right? I think so.
Browning butter is pretty easy too. Don't be afraid. Once tiny light to medium brown specks start to appear and it smells nutty you are pretty much there. Don't walk away from it at this point or you'll have burnt butter.
I also chose to roast the bananas before smashing them up and putting them in the mix. This, like the brown butter is not necessary, but it can be helpful if you have bananas that aren't so ripe. If you have super ripe bananas, go ahead and skip this step or not.
You roast them inside of their peels. After they cool, you have a super soft ripe and juicy banana awaiting you inside the peel. Be sure to peel them over a bowl so you don't loose a drop of banana flavor.
Go ahead and take a little time to make this nutty and moist banana bread this weekend. Your home will smell amazing. It is a win win situation.
3 medium bananas
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and browned
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup plain yogurt (any fat content) or buttermilk
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place the three bananas, unpeeled, evenly spaced, on the baking sheet. Bake the bananas for 10-15 minutes, until dark brown to almost black in color. Remove from oven and let cool, until ready to use.
Maintain oven temperature and grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan and set aside.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Butter will begin to foam and crackled as it melts. When the crackling subsides, the butter will begin to brown. Swirl the pan occasionally as the butter cooks. When the butter browns and begins to smell nutty, remove the pan from the burner and transfer the butter to a small bowl. Taking the butter out of the hot saucepan will stop the butter from burning. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, vanilla extract, and yogurt or buttermilk. Then add the roasted bananas by peeling them over the bowl, allowing both the banana and any juices to be combined with the egg mixture. Whisk well to combine. When the butter has cooled, whisk in the browned butter.
Add the wet ingredients, all at once to the dry ingredients. Fold together, making sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl to reveal any hidden pockets of flour. Fold in the chopped pecans. Try not to over stir the batter.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to rest in the pan for 15 minutes, before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Bread will last 4 days, well wrapped at room temperature. It will also freeze well.
Adapted from Joy the Baker