OK, men, before you panic at the thought of converting ounces to cups or teaspoons to tablespoons, read this post from way back in August '06 when Southern Man was just learning to "cook."
This is an easy recipe - darn near impossible to screw it up - and produces a dark, heavy, sweet banana bread. It's so good that Southern Man routinely overbuys on bananas just to have an excuse to make it. There's a batch in the oven this very minute! So are you ready?
Tools required (all available at any grocery store or Wal-Mart):
- Measuring cup, wth capacity at least 2 cups. You'll measure some stuff with it.
- A teaspoon. That's the little one, not the big one. You'll measure some other stuff with it.
- A tablespoon. That's the big one, not the little one. You'll mix stuff up with it. Electric mixers are for women and wimps.
- A fork. You'll mash bananas with it. Do not use a hammer to mash the bananas.
- A large mixing bowl. You'll mix everything together in it.
- A bowl. You'll melt the butter in it.
- A dinner plate. You'll mash the bananas on it.
- A 9-inch loaf pan. Everything eventually goes in here.
- A can of cooking spray. You'll spray a bit of it into the pan.
- An oven mitt, or hot pad holder, or t-shirt. You'll handle a hot pan with it.
- A serrated knife (that is, a knife with a ragged edge). You'll chop the nuts and cut the bread with it.
- Plastic wrap. You'll wrap any leftover bread in it.
- A working gas or electric oven. You'll bake the bread in it.
- A working microwave (optional). You'll melt the butter in it. Do not use your propane torch to melt the butter.
Ingredients required (also available at the grocery store or Wal-Mart) and amounts:
- one stick of real butter.
- 1 cup of sugar (Southern Man uses half white, half brown).
- 2 eggs.
- 1/8 teaspoon salt.
- 1 teaspoon baking soda (but not baking powder; they are subtly different)
- 2 cups flour (for darker bread, Southern Man uses unbleached flour).
- three large, very ripe bananas. Black skin is fine. Ants and fruit flies, not so good.
- handful of chopped nuts if desired.
- Turn the oven on and set the temperature to 325 degrees. Of course, Farenheit. Celcius is for people who can afford to hire other people to cook for them.
- Unwrap the stick of butter and put it in the bowl. Put the bowl in the microwave and heat on medium for about a minute. The goal is to have really soft butter but not butter flambé.
- Measure the sugar, salt, and soda into the mixing bowl. Add the butter. Mix it all up with the big spoon.
- Add the eggs and mix it up some more. If you've never cracked an egg, crack them into the bowl that the butter was in and pick the shell pieces out, then dump them (the eggs, that is, not the shell pieces) into the mixing bowl.
- Add the flour, a little at a time, and mix it up as you go.
- Peel the bananas, discard the skin and any really icky stuff, and put the bananas on the plate.
- Mash the bananas with the fork.
- Use the fork to scrape the bananas into the bowl and use the big spoon to mix it up.
- Chop up the nuts, add them to the bowl and mix it up one more time.
- Spray some cooking spray into the loaf pan. Not too much, just a thin coat.
- Dump the yellow goop from the mixing bowl into the pan and smooth it out.
- Put the pan in the middle of the top rack of the oven.
- Take it out after 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you have a timer and want to use it, go ahead. But real men don't use oven timers.
- Turn the oven off.
- The bread needs to sit for ten minutes, so if you haven't already done so clean up your work area while the bread is cooling.