What's Cooking?! Best Banana Bread EVER!
Lucky for you it's raining in SC today. And when it rains, all I want to do is cook. So today, I'm unearthing the rotten bananas that I put in my freezer to keep til I was ready and I'm making my favorite banana bread. (side note here...If you're always throwing away rotten bananas because you don't have time to make banana bread right when they get rotten, STOP IT! Put those suckers in the freezer and then just microwave them to thaw them out...cut the end off and they squeeze right out, perfectly mushy and great!)
I love banana bread. But I have been on a hunt for an amazing banana bread recipe since college. I'm not kidding you. I bet I have made 20 different banana bread recipes over the years trying to find one that knocked my socks off. I have at least 4 pretty good ones that I have on recipe cards in my recipe book, and I have mixed up even those 4 countless times trying to create the perfect combination of ingredients.
I think banana bread needs to be moist, flavorful, kinda chewy, super banana-ey...just good. And after years of searching, I'm done looking. I'm not kidding you...I am done. This recipe is HANDS DOWN the BEST banana bread that I have ever had. I could eat my weight in it. My whole family loves it so much that I normally double or triple it every time I make it. I make it in big loaves, little loaves, and muffins. It's just incredible. It even has dark rum in it...are you kidding me?! Unreal! Why didn't I ever think of that?! And now, you have to try it and let me know how much you love it now too.
I will say though, that since I have a dairy allergic kid, I omit the buttermilk powder it calls for. Also Tid Bit showed up for years allergic to tree nuts and while he's supposedly not allergic to them anymore, we haven't done a food challenge on it, so I still omit the nuts too....but I can't imagine how it'd increase the total incredibleness quotient of this recipe to add them. So if you put them, then gush for me on how amazing it was in the comments section.
Here you go...
Makes 1 large loaf.
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/4 c. dark rum (I use Captain Morgans)
2 large ripe bananas
1 Tbsp milk (I use soymilk here)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 c. unbleached flour
2 Tbsp dry buttermilk blend (I leave this out since we have the dairy allergy)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c. finely chopped walnuts
1/2 c. coarsely chopped pecans
1/4 c. sweetened coconut
Rum Glaze (I am usually too lazy to do this part, but it sure is good if you do!)
1/4 c. sugar
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp water
1/4 c. dark rum
For Banana Bread
Preheat oven to 325F. Grease a large loaf pan. (I always use cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper so that my loaves come out perfectly.)
Combine sugar, oil, rum, bananas, eggs, milk, and vanilla in a mixing bowl. Beat until blended, scraping bowl occasionally. Mix the flour, buttermilk blend, baking soda, and salt in another bowl. Add to the banana mixture, stirring just until moistened: do not overmix.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the walnuts, pecans, and coconut over the top. Bake about 45 minutes or until the edges pull away from the sides of the pan. (You can also make sure a toothpick comes out clean...I tend to think it takes longer than this to bake, but I have a crappy oven as you all know.) Let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove bread from the pan (pecans and coconut should be on top.) Drizzle with the warm rum glaze. Serve warm or chill for later use. This also freezes beautifully!
To make the rum glaze:
Combine the sugar, butter and water in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave until boiling and boil for 1-2 minutes. Stir in the rum. (Or you may boil in a saucepan for 5 minutes, then add the rum.)
Now that you're done...call a friend to come over for coffee and really enjoy your amazing bread!