Banana Bread (AND Bonus Gluten Free Recipe)

Banana Bread

She was a young lady growing up on a small farm in southwest Ohio and the boy courting her was making his way around the fields at midnight. Her siblings where trying to gather the loose horses just as they returned home from their first date. Two hours into the hunt they finally had them on the way back to the barn by rattling buckets of feed and leading the way.

 

They married at the small brick Baptist Church and started building a home on her parent’s land. A three bedroom cottage with a kitchen facing east, to catch the morning sun. He traveled to town with his lunch pail in hand to manage the produce at the local grocer. After the house was finished they planted fruit trees with care around the property and started working the land for the start of a garden.

 

Still newlyweds, he took the call to travel to Wright Field. He packed his uniforms, and she went with him to say goodbye.
He would write letters every week, sometimes more, sometimes less. She had a good idea of where he was at the beginning with the post marks coming from the East Coast during his training, then across the pond. They slowed then, taking longer to travel the ocean to her. She wrote back – and one letter told the news of her belly growing with his baby. My father.

 

He returned to a toddler son, a happy wife, and silently put the months of the German Black Forest behind him. They had two more babies. A girl, then another boy.

 

We would stop over often. In the summer I would run to the back yard to find them weeding their impressive garden, or find Grandma up a tree picking apples while Grandpa mowed the grass. Tough as nails, she never slowed – even in her sixties, and we continually reminded her that climbing on the counters to reach serving dishes was not ideal. At her five-foot height, she ignored us regularly and smirked every time she was caught in the act.

 

Her sunny kitchen always had a hidden gem. She tore paper towels into quarters and placed them in front of my cousins and me – waiting impatiently. She would pull a foil package from the bread drawer, carefully unwrap and slice the treat into equal pieces. The Banana Bread was portioned onto the towels and we would eat it greedily, always asking for seconds.

 

After I moved away, she would sneak a foil covered package out of her freezer for me to take back to my college apartment.
She turned Ninety Five last week.

Happy Birthday, Grandma.

 
Esther’s Banana Bread

Ingredients:
¼ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 cups sugar, plus more for topping
1/2 cup shortening (not butter)
2 eggs
2 cups flour
3 over-ripe bananas
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preparation:
• Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
• Pour buttermilk into measuring cup. Add baking soda and stir. Set aside.
• In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together sugar and shortening on medium speed for three minutes, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula half way through. • Turn the speed to low and add eggs one at a time.
• Turn speed up to medium/high and mix for 30 seconds.
• In a medium bowl mash bananas with a fork or meat tenderizer into little to no chunks remain. Add vanilla and salt to bananas.
• With the mixer on low, alternate adding flour and buttermilk to creamed mixture, ending with flour.
• Add banana mixture. Do not over mix. Streaks of flour should remain.
• Grease* the bottom and sides of a large loaf pan.
• Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle with sugar.
• Bake large loaves for 1 hour; until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the loaf.

*I grease the entire interior of the pan, then place a piece of parchment paper (cut to fit) in the bottom of the pan.

Note: Freezes very well.

 

Jessica’s Gluten Free Banana Bread

Ingredients:
¼ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups gluten free flour blend*
¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon baking powder
1-1/2 cups sugar, plus more for topping
1/2 cup shortening (not butter)
2 eggs
3 large or 4 small over-ripe bananas
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

*Gluten Free Flour Blend
24 ounces white rice flour (4 ½ cups, pus 1/3 cup) (one bag of Bob’s Red Mill brand)
7 ½ ounces brown rice flour (1 2/3 cups)
7 ounces potato starch (not potato flour) (1 1/3 cup)
3 ounces tapioca starch (also called tapioca flour) (3/4 cup)
¾ ounce nonfat milk powder (3 tablespoons)

Measure out all ingredients and place in a zip sealed bag. Mix well. Store in refrigerator for up to three months)

Preparation:
• Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
• Pour buttermilk into measuring cup. Add baking soda and stir. Set aside.
• In a medium bowl, combine gluten free flour blend, salt and baking powder. Set aside.
• In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together sugar and shortening on medium speed for three minutes, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula half way through. • Turn the speed to low and add eggs one at a time.
• Turn speed up to medium/high and mix for 30 seconds.
• In a medium bowl mash bananas with a fork or meat tenderizer into little to no chunks remain. Add vanilla to bananas.
• With the mixer on low, alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk to creamed mixture, ending with flour.
• Add banana mixture. Do not over mix. Streaks of flour should remain.
• Grease* the interior of a large loaf pan.
• Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle with sugar.
• Let the batter rest for twenty minutes.
• Bake for 1 hour; until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the loaf.

*I grease the entire interior of the pan, then place a piece of parchment paper (cut to fit) in the bottom of the pan.

Note: Freezes very well.

2 thoughts on “Banana Bread (AND Bonus Gluten Free Recipe)

  1. Pingback: Italian Meatballs (Gluten Free) | Purple Leopard Recipes

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