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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Banana Bread

Ah, banana bread. . . I love the smell of it in my kitchen, especially on a cold, rainy day like today.  I have tried many variations of banana bread and muffins, but I always come back to this recipe.  It's a tried and true one from my mother-in-law, Lois.  This recipe is by far my kids' (and my husband's) favorite. 

Here is the recipe:

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 ripe bananas
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Stir soda and salt into flour.  Cream butter and sugar; add eggs and beat until light.  Add bananas and beat well to mix.  (I never mash my bananas first--just put them in and let the mixer do the work!)  Mix in flour.  Blend in vanilla and nuts, if desired.  Bake in 9 by 5 inch loaf pan for one hour or until done.  Loaf is done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

I usually have to bake my bread a little longer than an hour to get it done.  I also do not add the nuts--not everyone in my family is a fan of them!

When done, remove from oven.  Let sit for 10 minutes, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.  This loaf freezes well.  The two loaves above represent a double batch that I made today.  I have also used this recipe to make three small loaves--they make great gifts! 

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