I savor the lulls in my busy schedule when I have a bit of time to bake. There is something about the the smell of vanilla and the softness of sifted flour, the anticipation of tasting goodies still warm from the oven.
Some of my favorite recipes are the ones my passed down from my mom. Smelling them cooking brings back all sorts of happy memories. She bakes so many good things: cakes, cookies.. oh and her chocolate cream pie that my sister asked for each year for her birthday, instead of a cake! But of all of the things she made, my favorite was banana nut bread.
I was in my early teens when I asked her to give me the recipe so I could try making it myself. Fortunately, I have since learned to spell flour properly!
It is important to use nice and ripe bananas, to give the sweetness needed. I also use double the banana listed in the recipe, to make the bread extra moist.
It is also important to make it in my mom's antique mixing bowl, which she passed on to me in my mid 20's. All the yummy things which have been mixed in it, have seasoned it for perfect baking. Hey, that's my story, and I am sticking to it.
Oh and the walnuts... the recipe says to use 3/4 of a cup. Ha! You can't have too many walnuts in banana nut bread and of course you need some sprinkled on top for looks!
How much is that? 1/2 cup? 3/4 of a cup? I don't know, but it looks right! Oh, and since I have tweaked the recipe a bit, it often needs to cook longer. I use a strand of uncooked spaghetti pushed into the cooked loaf. If it comes out "clean" the bread is done, if it has batter on it, keep it in the oven longer.
In case you would like to try, here is the recipe:
3 cups of Bisquick
2/3 cup of sugar
1/3 cup flour
1 mashed banana (I double and use two bananas)
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup of chopped walnuts (or how ever many you like!)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a bread pan. Combine everything except the walnuts and stir vigorously till mixed. Add walnuts, holding aside a handful to sprinkle on top.
Pour into pan and sprinkle remaining chopped walnuts on top. Bake 55-60 minutes.
Cool on a rack before removing the bread from the pan. Enjoy!
Mmm, time to find some cool sweetened butter to spread on a nice thick slice!