We’re Cooking: Banana Bread

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I have often noted I am not a baker, as exact measurements required for the craft just don’t align with my cooking style. However, Gary loves bananas and he loves treats he can enjoy at the end of a long run. Since the bananas here are growing on every other tree we picked a bunch and made this satisfying breakfast bread. I cut down on the amount of sugar used vs. some traditional banana bread recipes. The natural sweetness of the bananas was enough for our palates, however feel free to add more if you prefer. Also, the bananas were rather ripe, going over to the other side, to begin with. I placed them in the freezer overnight before using them. This intensifies that sweetness and makes them very mushy, perfect for bread. Plus, I used a lot of bananas, but you probably only need 2 or 3. And I added raisins…and honey roasted macadamia nuts…because Gary loves raisins…and honey roasted macadamia nuts.

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Recipe:

Hawaiian Banana Bread
Ingredients:
6 – 8 small apple bananas (equivalent of about 4 regular bananas), very ripe
1/2 cup raisins, soaked in 1/4 cup hot water to rehydrate
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup honey roasted macadamia nuts, crushed (I used a cocktail muddler, but the back of a pan or the like will work)
1/2 cup sugar (or up to 1 cup if you want it sweeter)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup melted butter
pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Non-stick cooking spray

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Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mash the bananas in a bowl with a potato masher or fork. Add butter, raisins, vanilla, sugar and egg, whisking to incorporate. Sift the remaining ingredients together except the nuts and pour into the bowl. Mix well. Add the macadamia nuts, stir to incorporate. Spray a loaf or small cake pan (6x6x2) well with cooking spray. Pour in the batter. Place in oven and bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove and let cool slightly, serve warm with a dab of butter. Refrigerate the leftovers for up to 5 days.

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