Sunday, December 5, 2010

Banana Bread with Cinnamon Crumble Topping

There are few things that say comfort food more than banana bread. The smell that weaves in and out or each room screams, "soften that butter... I'm almost ready!" I have tried everal banana bread recipes, and I'm sure there are many that are better than this one, but this one is my favorite that I have tried. It's got roasted bananas and a cinnamon struesel topping. Yum! I gave a loaf to my dad to take home, and when my mom saw it, she said, "What bakery did you get that from?" Score! She later told me that it looked perfect. It does though! Look at it! Uhh.. yum! If you've got a go-to banana bread, give this one a try to compare. I'm not promising that it will be your new favorite; I just think you'll love it. :)
Banana Bread with Cinnamon Crumble Topping:
source: It's All American Food by David Rosengarten

4 medium bananas, quite ripe
10 T unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 c sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
1 1/2 c plus 1/3 c flour
1/4 c sour cream
1 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
2 extra large eggs
1 t vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Open the bananas and slice them in half lengthwise. Now, some people say that they actually wait until the banana is so ripe and black that it actually oozes out when you squeeze it out. That makes me a bit squeemish, although I don't doubt that it is delicious in the bread. This recipe, however, will not work with banana juice, being that you have to cut them in half. It might put a damper on things if you try to half banana funk.

Place the sliced bananas on the aluminum foil. Put them in the oven for 10 minutes.
To make the crumb mixture, melt 3 T of the butter in a bowl. Add 1/4 c sugar.
Add the cinnamon and 1/3 c flour.
Use a fork to mix it all together until it resembles coarse crumbs. Set it aside.
Next, You'll want to prepare for the bread itself. Combine the sour cream, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. You'll see the baking soda start to work once it's mixed with the sour cream.
By now, your bananas should be done. Take them out of the oven. You can't really see the juice that came out, but there's a little bit of the juice from the banana that worked its way out onto the aluminum foil.
Lower the heat of the oven to 350 degrees.

Place one stick of butter (8T) in a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining sugar- 3/4 c. Cream the mixture for 2 minutes until it is light and fluffy.
Add the roasted bananas and any liquid that was left on the bottom of the pan.
Mix that up until you have this mushy mixture as seen below.
Add the sour cream mixture.
Add the eggs and vanilla. There really were eggs in that little bowl. They just slithered on out of the bowl before my camera snapped the picture. Sneaky...
Add the last 1 1/2 c of flour. Mix for a couple minutes.
Grease a 5x9x3 pan. i actually used two smaller loaf pans. I just tend to have better luck with the smaller pans. If you're using two pans, divide the batter between them. Otherwise, dump it all into one pan.

Sprinkle with the reserved crumb mixture. Bake for 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. It is very possible that this will take up to 75 minutes. Another tip with banana bread, I place my pans on a cookie sheet to avoid the bottom getting so dark. It may not make much of a difference, but I like to think that it does.
These are the finished loaves. I think those loaves might actually be emitting a rainbow. They create pure happiness.
Let them cool and serve them with softened butter.

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