Banana Bread

Today’s project brought to you by Molly Katzen

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, plus a little extra for the pan
  • 3 medium bananas, very ripe
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda


Method

  1. Let butter stand at room temperature to soften about an hour before you start.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  3. Lightly grease and flour a loaf pan
  4. Mash bananas in a bowl until they form a mostly smooth pulp, then switch from mashing to mixing as you drizzle the buttermilk directly into the bananas. (You can use the fork or a whisk.) Keep mixing until the mixture is completely blended, and then set this aside.
  5. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl a few times during this process. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract, and continue to beat for another minute or two, until everything is well combined.
  6. Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add about half of this dry mixture to the butter mixture, stirring it in with a wooden spoon. Then stir in about half of the banana-buttermilk mixture. Repeat with the remaining dry mixture, followed by the remaining banana-buttermilk mixture, stirring from the bottom of the bowl after each addition, just enough to thoroughly blend without overmixing.
  7. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, taking care to scrape all of it in with a rubber spatula. Then use the spatula to spread the batter evenly. Bake for 50 to 70 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted all the way into the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove the pan from the oven and allow the bread to cool in the pan for at least 15 minutes before removing it. (The best way to do this is to rap the pan sharply on the counter a few times to loosen the bread, and then let it slide out onto a cooling rack.) To avoid crumbling, wait at least 20 minutes longer to slice and serve.
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