Monday, March 12, 2007

Puny's Banana Bread...not puny!

Every time I come home to visit my parents, Mama has overly ripe bananas in the freezer for me to make some kind of breakfast treat for them. I like trying to find new recipes to try and this time was no different. The book I used this time was Jan Karon's Mitford Cookbook and Kitchen Reader. If you're not familiar with her Mitford series, it is about a preacher in a small town called Mitford. He has a housekeeper named Puny who takes good care of him. She keeps his refrigerator stocked with homecooked meals; otherwise, he would eat every meal at the local diner and his doctor is against that! Eventually, Father Tim meets and marries a woman named Cynthia (who has her own banana bread recipe), but Puny just can't give up cooking for him. This, with a couple of modifications, is her recipe!
This bread was nice and soft with a sweet and clearly banana taste. I think having three bananas instead of my normal two was the key to actually tasting the fruit. I recommend this highly. Because of the great nutritional benefit of bananas, this is my entry for Sweetnicks ARF Tuesday. Check her site for even more wonderful recipes.
Puny's Banana Bread
1 1/4 cup sugar (I used 3/4 cup brown sugar)*
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs, beaten
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1 1/2 cups AP (white lily if you have it) flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup buttermilk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a loaf pan by spraying it with cooking spray. Beat sugar and oil together until fluffy. Add eggs and mix. Mix in mashed bananas. In a separate bowl sift together the flour, soda, and salt. Add 1 cup of the flour mixture to the banana mixture. Stir until just combined. Mix in HALF of the buttermilk. Add the remaining flour and buttermilk and stir until just combined. Pour into prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top. Bake for 45 minutes to one hour (I DEFINITELY needed an hour!), or until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan.
*The decreased amount of sugar still provided for a very sweet bread. I don't think you need the 1 1/4 cups, 3/4 is plenty. If you wanted to reduce it to 1/2 cup, it would probably still be sweet enough. The brown sugar gives the bread a darker color.

12 comments:

gail said...

Love your pictures! And the muffin one by the mug is so great too.
I'm still reading the Mitford books and loving them so I know who Puny is. Looks like a great recipe. Enjoy your spring break!

Mary said...

Back in my undergrad days, my dad would also stockpile overripe bananas in the freezer for whenever I came home to visit. Sometimes I would have to bake 8 loaves of banana bread in one weekend!

Cate said...

Mmm, love Banana Bread, made a batch last night. So far, our favorite recipes are Paula Deen's and Nigella's. Yours looks really moist, and I have 4 more bananas to use up...

Claire said...

Gail - Thanks...nice new camera! I've read all the Mitford books except the last one. One day I'll need some Father Tim and will pick it up!

Mary - I love it!

Cate - Thanks! It is pretty moist. I think it is one of the better ones I've done. I haven't tried either of those, but I've seen them in your recipe collection.

veuveclicquot said...

OOOh! I made this last night, and boy is it good! So moist (well... then again, I underbaked it a little.)

After all my protests about disliking bananas in my desserts, I'm so happy that you've made a convert of me. You rock!

Red Dirt Mummy said...

Hmmm... I just happen to have some over-ripe bananas in the freezer!

Kate said...

I love that top picture!

Did you see my post on the nutritional aspects of bananas??

Kristen said...

I love banana bread... can't wait to give your recipe a try!

girl from florida said...

I made banana bread last night with the Joy of Cooking recipe. Lo and behold, as I'm pulling it out of the oven, I discovered I'd forgotten to add the eggs! It was still really good, amazingly. I also add 3 bananas (though the recipe calls for 2) and a bit more butter (8 tbs. instead of 6 because I just stuck the whole stick in there). My friends constantly say it's the best bread they've ever had.

Stacy at Exceedingly Mundane said...

I love the Mitford books and I love banana bread. I have a gallon ziploc I keep in my freezer just for ripe bananas. I need to cook some out of there, come to think of it. I'd love to try this one, but alas, I have no buttermilk. Something I rarely buy. I love banana bread though and this looks delicous!

Claire said...

VC - Loved your post...maybe I've made you a convert!?

RDM - Go for it! Frozen bananas are the best...I think they actually have more of a banana taste.

Kate - Yes! I did see it. Bananas are great. They hit the spot so often. One night, I woke up in the middle of the night not feeling great but with a hungry type feeling. I went down stairs and had a half a banana and that was perfect. I like mine either slightly green or totally yellow and COLD.

Kristen - Let me know when you do. I have MANY different ones on here but this one ranks in the top 2.

GFF - I think that 3 bananas is the key.

Stacy - Have you read the last book. I haven't yet. I also want to get this cookbook...my mom has it and I have to "borrow" it when I go home!

Louis BB said...

Once I found this recipe when the book came out it has become the only one I use for banana bread. A note to Stacy about the lack of buttermilk: you can use sourcream instead. Trust me! Delicious! (I am in the process of making 8 loaves for our Church Fair, Rummage Sale (Bane and Blessing) and Chicken BBQ to be held this weekend.