I love all things banana, and yet, I’ve never tried my hand at making banana bread. I’ve usually balked at trying my hand at it for one reason or another. Mostly, I do enjoy baking, but I would say I’m not “as good” at it is as I am at cooking. That is, baking is a lot more precise than I feel cooking is, so there’s a greater chance at screwing up a bread than there is screwing up a piece of chicken. Not that I mind screwing up, because that’s the fun of being in the kitchen, but it can be a barrier, nonetheless.
This afternoon, I finally tried baking banana bread on a lazy day while watching movies with my good boy, Benny. I have a lot of movies to catch up on reviewing, but more on that in later posts.
I bought a bunch of bananas at the store about a week ago. I ate two of them, and had three leftover. I happened upon watching this banana bread recipe video on YouTube by Cooking with Rila, promising an “easy moist banana recipe,” and saw it called for only three bananas. Boom. That’s enough of a “click” in my head to make me want to do the thing.
I only had to go to the store to procure a bread pan (seems ideal!), baking soda (thinking I didn’t have any, but I did, but who cares because it’s less than one dollar), and I caved on getting a the always expensive little bit of vanilla extract (the video recipe doesn’t call for it, but someone recommended it in the comment section, and we all know how vital vanilla extract is to most baking recipes; ergo).
Something I wish I had also gotten, but neglected to: Measure cups and/or spoons. Related to the precision needed in baking, it would probably help to have those! Instead, I either use my liquid measuring cup for the sugar the recipe calls for, or I eyeball it, like with the baking soda, which resulted in accidentally pouring too much in (so it seemed) and me adding more sugar to hopefully compensate (I have no idea if that’s a good counteracting method).
I also think I did one tablespoon of vanilla extra instead of teaspoon, but nonetheless!
Overall, the recipe was, true to its name, easy to follow along with, and turned out moist.
First, I preheated the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
I then used a fork to smash the three bananas, and mix them up, in a big bowl. I added the three-fourths cup of sugar, one large egg (does anyone else crack it into a smaller cup just in case you get a piece of a shell in there to avoid getting a shell in your overall mixture? I do that!), and I opted for a third-cup of softened salted butter over the other option of a third-cup of oil. That’s when I mixed with the whisk.
Next, I added in a third-cup of milk, which I used my Silk extra creamy vanilla almond milk, and I have to say, I don’t think I noticed the banana bread tasting particularly almond milk-like? But obviously, you can use whatever milk you’d like. I think the point is just to try to get some more liquids in there to counter the dry ingredients. I’m sure there’s a more scientific reason for adding milk to a recipe, but that’s my thought! This is where I added in my tablespoon of vanilla extract, and then I whisked again.
For the first time, I got to finally bust out my sifter for the one cup of all purpose flour the recipe called for. I need to watch a YouTube video on how to properly use one, because while it does have the measurements for one cup, two cups, and three cups on the side, I couldn’t quite tell when I reached those markers. So, that was another sort of eyeball thing. Once it looked like my flour ratio to the mixture looked about right to me, I stopped sifting, added the baking soda, and whisked again. That’s how I roll, folks.
I’m not sure how others do it, but at this point, I greased up the bread pan. I just poured in some oil, and then using a paper towel, I tried to smear the oil all over. I get super paranoid in baking that my baked item will stick to the pan, so I tried to be generous with my application of the oil.
Now, on her video, Rila said to bake the banana bread mixture in the preheated oven (at 350 degrees Fahrenheit) for one hour. Fortunately, I’m also paranoid about overcooking my baked items, so I actually pulled the bread out of the oven at about the 47-minute mark? I say fortunate because I then just noticed, as I was writing this and looking at her video again, that in the description, she said the one hour was a typo, and you should bake for 40 minutes! Phew. That was a close one.
Even at technically seven minutes longer than her recommendation, the top still came out crispy (crispy enough to make me want to pull it out 13 minutes earlier than the duration I was working under), and the middle banana part was all hot and gooey yumminess.
I’m also happy to report that after I let it cool for only a couple minutes, I flopped the pan over a plate and the bread came out nice and easily! It didn’t stick at all. Oiling was a success! But then I ruined it because obviously, the bread was upside down, so I tried to flip it back over, and it ruptured.
I had a healthy (ha) heaping of the banana bread, including one of my favorite things in baking, the crispy edges, and it was quite good, if I say so myself! I didn’t notice the bitterness of too much baking soda, or it being overly vanilla from the vanilla extract, and as I mentioned, it didn’t taste like almond milk (not that that would have been a problem). It just tasted like yummy banana bread to me.
So, thank you, Cooking with Rila, for the easy banana bread recipe! Moist indeed. If you like your food recipes written out instead of watching a video, maybe my written out description of following her recipe will be helpful!
How do you make your banana bread recipe? I know some in the comments on her video also said they added ground cinnamon. I didn’t want to do that here, because I didn’t want the cinnamon to overpower the banana, but maybe next time!