This blog is dedicated to Mum, my greatest mentor. It is a compilation of simple recipes - Bengali, Indian, Burmese and Continental, among others. All of these recipes have been tested in my kitchen. Most use everyday ingredients found at your local market, but some use specialty ingredients available at Asian and/or Indian markets. Comments are welcome and members are invited to send in any recipes they would like to share.
Inspired by a recipe in a Crisco pamphlet, this is one of the first dessert breads I learned to make. Over time and many tweaks later, I've perfected the recipe to my taste.
Some ingredients in this recipe are more important than others. For example, I read somewhere that one teaspoon of baking soda (rather than half a teaspoon) produces a darker bread. Also, the recipe calls for a cup of white sugar, but I prefer using dark brown sugar which I believe helps give it a darker appearance.
The First Slice for Tasting
The original recipe called for three-quarters of a cup of Crisco oil, which I switched to a cup of melted, unsalted butter which is more to my taste. Another change I make is to grease the pan with Pam butter flavoured spray and white granulated sugar in place of flour. The sugar caramelizes during baking and produces a sweeter crust.
There can never be too many nuts
A happy mistake I made this time is going to be the norm from now on. I forgot to add the walnut pieces until after the batter had been poured into the pan. So I poured them all over the top and used a fork to push some into the batter. It worked better because when the nuts are folded into the batter, they tend to settle on the bottom and often burn. By inserting them right at the end, they remained towards the top which was a lot better.
After resting overnight
It's important to allow the banana nut bread to rest before slicing, but it's so hard not to taste it right away. Slicing it too soon causes the bread to crumble so it needs to be covered loosely with foil or Saran wrap and left on the counter overnight. Make sure not to tighten the foil/wrap so that the bread can dry out and not steam.
Best of all, this entire recipe can be prepared in one bowl by combining all the wet ingredients first and then sifting the flour and other dry ingredients directly into the mixing bowl and folding everything together with the help of a spatula.