They say “baking is the heart of cooking” and if this is true, then I am able to finally reach here after long days of struggle. Can you differentiate between a pro baker and an amateur baker ? Now, do not judge them by frosting or decoration skills. Baking needs passion and understanding of the exact measurements and frosting or icing requires aesthetic and artistic skills. And it too depends upon one’s personal preferences. For instance, I prefer lightly frosted cakes or cupcakes, if I have to dig 2 inch down the icing to reach for the cake, it will surely turn me off, can not handle so much sugar highs.
There is a fine line of demarcation exist between pro and amateur baker, I may be in that transgression stage, but from my initial days of baking, I have come a long way. Why am I saying this : because –
“On Sundays I no longer order pizza from Dominos, I bake mine with-6-8 toppings ; No more gazing and drooling at the bakeries, I can bake my blueberry pies with real blueberries ; Give me some flour and butter will make you a nice dough that you can use for making cherry tarts or pies ; Break my morning with homemade cookies and biscuits, sorry Marie for that ; For anniversary and birthdays I bake my own cheesecake with my choicest crust and when I found one morning that there is no more breakfast bread left in the pantry, rather than running to my grocery store in pajamas, I decided to bake this banana pecan loaf. ” 🙂
Banana pecan loaf – a quick bread recipe, it has two sad-looking ripe bananas, can not resist myself from adding some orange juice in it, some chopped walnuts, displace half of the sugar with honey, no butter, two large eggs, some dried cranberries and pecan to top the loaf. It will be finished in just 90 minutes – I mean prepping, baking and eating !!! It was so addictive !
- All purpose flour : 2 cups
- Sugar : ½ cup or according to taste
- Honey : ½ cup
- Salt to taste
- Baking powder : ¼ tsp
- Baking soda : 1 tsp
- Eggs : 2 large
- Sunflower oil : ⅔ cup
- Ripe bananas (mashed) : 2
- Orange juice : 5-6 tbsp
- Grated rind of orange ; 2 tbsp
- Dried cranberries : ½ cup
- Chopped walnuts : ¼ cup
- Pecan for topping
- Thoroughly grease a 2 pound loaf tin and line the base with parchment paper.
- Sift the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda in a large mixing bowl.
- Stir in the sugar, honey, mashed bananas, chopped walnuts, dried cranberries and orange rind.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the beaten eggs, orange juice and oil until well combined.
- Add the mixture to the dry ingredients and mix untill well blended with the help of a hand mixer. But do not overbeat, just combined.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf pan.
- Arrange the pecans over the bread batter.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 350 F for about 1 hour , until firm to touch or toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Turn out the loaf and cool on a wire rack.
1) This bread will keep for couple of days, wrap it carefully in a cool, dry place.
2)Baking soda is usually used where any acidic ingredients are there in the bread, like orange juice and honey or buttermilk, it reacts and forms air pockets which gives light shaggy bread like texture.
3) No yeast requires for making quick breads. Chemical leaveners like baking powder and baking soda both are used together with some acidic ingredients.
I usually bake either from a reputed baking blog or from cooking book that I have stocked in my little library, this recipe has been adapted from the book on chocolate and baking, but unfortunately its new editions are not available anymore. I have improved upon this recipe by adding honey and some walnuts and pecans.
Bananas are superfood, packed with loads of nutrients. Here is a article written by Helen Nichols of Well being secrets – 24 science backed health benefits of bananas.
Have a hearty Thursday, will be back shortly