Tuesday, October 9, 2007

No Nuts in My Bread, Please

Banana bread is one of my favorite comfort foods. When I was a kid, the whole family got excited when my mom made it. I never understood their devotion to covering a slice with cream cheese, though. I prefer mine warm with a little butter melted into it. Or just a chunk straight out of the oven. Or if I'm home alone while I'm mixing it up, I may or may not be prone to scooping out a huge spoonful of pure batter bliss. This, of course, is just to taste it to make sure that, there's .. um...enough cinnamon in it. Yeah. Because I would NEVER subject The Professor to under-cinnamon-ized banana bread.

And I need to go ahead and apologize to the best friend - because she has a deep love of banana bread, and she's been known to purchase bananas with the sole purpose of letting them get over ripe and then handing them to me with a maniacal gleam in her eye. And I don't think she's going to get any of this.

Although I love pecans and walnuts, I've never really liked them in breads and brownies. It's just one of the little quirks that makes me a little more crazy unique.
I also made this with soy milk, since we don't usually have regular milk in the house, and Splenda. The bread cooked a little faster than usual, and since I've never made it with soy milk before, I'm going to assume that's the reason. Although I'm just talking off the top of my head and have no idea if that's accurate.

Banana-Cinnamon Bread That Is Not Cluttered Up With Nuts

1/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 Splenda
2 medium bananas, mashed
1/4 cup soy milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and re-arrange your racks so that the pan will be in the center of the oven.
Grease one 8 inch loaf pan or three mini-loaf pans.

Beat butter and Splenda together until creamy. Add the bananas, soy milk, eggs and vanilla and mix until everything's combined. Sift Flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together. Add to the banana mixture and mix it up. Taste a heaping spoonful to make sure you've put enough cinnamon in it. You probably haven't, though, so if you're afraid of salmonella poisoning, just go ahead and dust the top of the batter with more cinnamon and mix it up again.

Pour into greased pan (and if you're a real cinnamon freak like, uh, me then sprinkle a little more on top) and bake for about 40 minutes.
Put pan on wire rack for ten minutes, then remove from pan and place loaf on wire rack to cool completely. Or start breaking off chunks of it and devour immediatly. Really, at this point, you can't go wrong.

I don't like my banana bread to be baked all the way through - I love it to be a little bit underdone in the center.

Even more than that, though, I LOVE the way the house smells while this bakes.

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