By Marissa Wu
As a college student, I find myself buying bananas more often than I anticipated. They are not my favorite fruit by any means, but their easy packaging, sturdiness, and versatility complement the busy student lifestyle.
While I am now a regular banana-buyer, my roommate and I can’t always keep up, and some inevitably brown into mush. Honestly, I think I want them to turn mushy because while bananas are not my fave fruit, banana bread is one of my fave snacks!
I’ve tested a couple banana bread recipes over the years, but am now a firm fan of Joy the Baker’s recipe from her first cookbook. Called “Mommom’s chocolate bourbon-spiked banana bread,” this recipe has a lot of things to love, but I put my own spin on it. I usually put a dash of rum in (because I never have bourbon...but then again, I rarely have rum) and add chocolate if I’m feeling feisty. The bread is fluffy, sweet, soft, and to die for if you eat it warm with butter.
You can omit the peanut butter in favor of peanut butter chips (just sub them in half-and-half for the chocolate, or go all in), and you can do a mix of white and brown sugar or pick one and commit. I did both because I cannot make decisions.
If you don’t have an electric mixer of any sort, this bread is very forgiving. Win friends and influence people with your (almost) rotten bananas and this recipe!
Peanut Butter Banana Bread
2 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 stick (½ cup) melted butter, cooled
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 ½ cups mashed ripe bananas (3-4)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons bourbon or rum (or whatever you fancy)
1 cup chocolate chips (I like semisweet or dark, you can do milk etc.)
⅛ - ¼ cup peanut butter
Preheat your oven to 350˚F.
Stir together the dry ingredients - flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl, mix sugar, vanilla, and eggs together. Be thorough, you shouldn’t see any egg white trails!
Add in the dry ingredients and mix gently until just combined. It’s OK to have flour streaks.
Add bananas and mix thoroughly, but stop as soon as there is no more flour visible. Do not overmix!
Throw in your optional items and fold them into the batter. Pour into a well-greased 9x5 loaf pan, muffin tins, cake pan...whatever pan you have, and bake, 20 minutes (muffins) or 1 hour (loaf).
Let cool for 5-10 minutes before unmolding. Eat warm with butter. Share (or not).