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Phoenix, Arizona, United States
The most important thing in my life is my family. I love my dear husband and 4 wonderful children (ages 11 through 18). I am a stay-at-home mom (my dream job!). Some of my favorite things to do include cooking (and eating!), photography, reading, piano, flute, watching my favorite TV shows, swimming, traveling, and most recently...using the rip stick with my kids. I would love to attend culinary school someday & fit my love of photography in with that somehow. My dream vacation is Italy - something I was recently blessed to experience! I'd love to return and see more of that beautiful and DELICIOUS country! My days are usually full of running kids to and from activities - scouts, sports, music and church. Sometimes I have to remind myself to breathe, but I absolutely LOVE my crazy life and the people I am lucky enough to share it with!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

BANANA-NUT BREAD (from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook)

MAKES TWO 9-BY-5-INCH LOAVES OR SIX 6-BY-2 3/4-INCH MINILOAVES. If you use miniloaf pans, reduce the baking time to forty-five minutes. The recipe comes from Deanna Caceres Calm, a former brand manager in the Martha Stewart Signature furniture group.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups ripe mashed banana (about 3 medium)
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup (about 4 ounces) walnuts or pecans, toasted and finely chopped
1/2 cup buttermilk
Nonstick cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat two 9-by-5-inch loaf pans with cooking spray; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, and vegetable oil on medium-low speed until combined. Beat in the flour mixture. Add the vanilla, banana, coconut, nuts, and buttermilk, and beat just to combine.

Divide batter evenly between prepared pans; smooth with an offset spatula. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the centers comes out clean, 60 to 65 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove loaves from pans and let cool completely. Bread can be kept at room temperature, wrapped well in plastic, for up to 1 week, or frozen for up to 3 months.

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