Friday, April 14, 2006

Banana bread is love...

I know it's Eastertime, and banana bread has no traditional place in the holiday (and would also be a no-no in Passover celebrations!), but when three aging bananas have been staring at you for a few days, what else can you do? Let them completely go to rot/waste? OF COURSE NOT!

The following banana recipe was given to me by a friend, actually the ex- of one of my very dearest friends, John. The recipe is entitled, Elva Williams' Banana Bread, and I believe Elva was our friend, Mark's grandmother (I am a teacher, and always like to give credit where credit is due!). Regardless of the origin of this recipe, you must believe me when I say that it is the MOST INCREDIBLE banana bread that you have ever or will ever eat! It is absolutely--dare I say it?--LUSCIOUS! Now my mother was known to make a very fine banana nut bread and gave away lots of mini-loaves of it as Christmas gifts, but this recipe is much, much better than hers. (Sorry, Mom!) In fact, I shouldn't even be giving this recipe away...I should be making my fortune with it! But as it was selflessly shared with me, so will I pass it on to all of you. And THAT is certainly in keeping with the spirit of this week's holidays! (I am trying hard to resist the temptation to claim that this is the banana bread that the Lord would come out of His tomb for..because that would be wrong--well, it would be right, but just a wee bit blasphemous. Tee hee.) So without further ado...

Elva Williams’ Banana Nut Bread

1. Sift together the following and then set aside:

2 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½- ¾ teaspoon salt

2. Chop ¾ cups walnuts or pecans (I use at least a cup if not 1 ½ cups!) and sprinkle with a little of the flour mixture. (This helps the nuts to not sink to the bottom of the bread.)

3. Cream ¾ cup softened butter and add 1 ½ cups sugar and cream together. Add 1 beaten egg, and mix again. Then add 1 teaspoon of vanilla and mix again.

4. Mash 3 medium overripe bananas (I use a pastry cutter for this) which should yield about a cup. Add the banana mash to the wet ingredients and mix again.

5. Add the flour mixture and ½ cup buttermilk to the rest of the wet ingredients in thirds, alternating the flour and buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk, you could add 2 tablespoons of powdered buttermilk to the dry ingredients and then use ½ cup of water in this step. Or if you have neither wet nor dry buttermilk, then add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to a half cup of milk and let it sit and clabber (get curdled-looking) before you begin this recipe.

6. Mix in the nuts.

7. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour-1 hour and 10 minutes for one large loaf, or 50-55 minutes for two small loaves or about 45 minutes for four gift-sized loaves. (I prefer the latter even if I’m not giving the loaves away because it makes more golden-brown-and-delicious crust!)

8. Try not to gobble the whole loaf down in one day's time (note that I said, TRY!).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi JoyBugaloo!

I tried this recipe for the first time last month, sent a loaf to my husband who's working as a medic in Iraq... and kept a loaf for myself.

That was the BEST banana bread I've ever had, hands down! My husband raved about it too.

Thank you for sharing!

Bridget O'Rell