Sunday, October 19, 2014

Breaking the Menu Monotony: Banana Bread

On a very rare occasion recently, we had some bananas over-ripen on us.  Bananas don't usually last long in our house, but they did this week.

So, banana bread - obviously.

I remember my mom making banana bread regularly when we were kids. Oh, it was so good. I won't even pretend that the version I made this week even comes close to rivaling hers, because
1) I made it and
2) it's gluten free.
While gluten free foods are tasty, they just seem to lack something, let's face it.
(Probably the gluten.  Eh?)

But anyway, I wanted to make a banana bread that all four of us could enjoy together, so gluten free was the only option.  I used this recipe.

I had a couple of very handsome helpers.

Alrighty, so the recipe I used called for a store-bought GF flour blend.  Well, you know me.  No can do.  So here's the blend I used. 

3/4 c. brown rice flour (ground myself)
1/2 c. white rice flour (ground myself)
1/4 c. corn starch
1/4 c. potato starch
1 1/2 tbsp xanthan gum

- TOTAL of 1 3/4 c. GF flour blend - 

So my kitchen assistants poured in the flour.  We only spilled about 50 cents worth of xanthan gum.  Geesh, that stuff is expensive.

Once our GF flour blend was mxed up, we added:

1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp baking soda

Once all the dry ingredients were mixed well, we transferred the mixture to another bowl so we could mix the wet ingredients.

Take a fork and mash your bananas.
The recipe called for 1 banana, but I added 1 and 1/2.
In the future, I'll add 2 whole bananas.

I followed the recipe and creamed together the following:
1/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. butter
2 eggs
the bananas

Turns out, the recipe calls for 2/3 c. sugar, but we spaced and only added half of that.  It works.  I think it would taste better to add the whole 2/3 cups, but if you're looking to lower the sugar content a bit, 1/3 will get you by just fine.

Also, in the future, I would first cream the sugar and butter together, then add in the eggs and bananas.  The way the recipe called to do it leaves the butter kind of chunky throughout.  Didn't ruin it by any means, just think I'd do it differently next time.

Once the wet ingredients were mixed thoroughly, I added about half the flour mixture, and once that was incorporated, I added the other half to create this sticky glob of dough.

If you've worked with GF dough much, you know that this is common.  I just scraped it off the whisk attachment, no worries.

That leg belongs to the KitchenAid switch operator and that hand belongs to the butter-adder.

My assistants and I scraped the dough into our loaf pan and it did this - another common thing when working with GF dough.  A sticky mound that doesn't spread.

Easiest way to get around this is to wet your fingers and smooth the dough out with wet fingers.  Works like a charm.  It leaves the top of the loaf wet and a little slimy, but that all disappears while it bakes.

350 degrees for 30 minutes equalled this beautiful brown loaf of banana bread - and a wonderful smelling house! shrivelled up as it cooled.  This happens to me constantly when baking GF.  Does anyone know the remedy to this, or is there one?

Regardless, it looked find once it was sliced.

And it tasted fine too!  Again, I'd add the full 2/3 cups of sugar next time, but this is a recipe I'll stick to in the future - yum!

Popped in the toaster, then buttered.  Divine.

Side note, I remember my father-in-law giving me a hard time because I toast and butter my banana bread.  Am I odd in doing this, or do others do this to?

If you eat gluten free, I recommend trying this recipe, and share your experience!

Next up on the blog - I finally found an awesome gluten-free pizza crust that tastes just like the real deal.  Stay tuned!

Banana Bread - love it or hate it?

What's the last thing you baked?

Really though - how to I stop my GF baked goods from shriveling up when they cool??

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