November 5, 2008

Low-Fat Banana Bread

I have been ripening some bananas in a paper bag for at least a week and finally they seemed ready to make some banana bread.  I found this recipe on Epicurious for Low-Fat Banana Bread and there were so many reviews (424 of them!) and most of them were positive so I was excited to try it.  After borrowing my boyfriend's sifter (why he has one and I don't is beyond me) I came home to start the bread making.  I made some changes on the original recipe based on what some of the reviewers on Epicurious said because I find that the reviews on that site are for the most part helpful and worth taking into consideration. One of the changes I made was using part brown sugar and part white sugar (this was before I knew a whipping of eggs was involved).  So after adding the brown and white sugar with the eggs, and realizing they needed to be whipped "until thick and light" at this point I was kind of regretting my decision about the brown sugar.  Then after beating them until my arm was sore, which unfortunately wasn't that long, I was wondering why I didn't have an electric hand mixer. My mom bakes all the time and has never used one- I would watch her beat the egg whites for Angel Food Cake on her own all the time, so that's what I've always been doing too, but now maybe I'm coming around to the idea of baking technology... This is as whipped as I could get them before I felt like my arm was on fire and it probably wouldn't make that much of a difference anyway- and it didn't. 

I had my first piece of bread right when it came out of the oven because I was so eager to try it so I definitely didn't give it any time to cool etc. but after having some I was kind of disappointed.  It was good but not THAT good, not very sweet and not really that banana-y even though I added more than the cup of bananas the recipe called for.  The sweetness thing was probably partially my fault because I cut out a little of the sugar after reading reviews.  Later though when I came back after class and the bread had cooled and been sitting for awhile I thought it was much better and me and this little guy enjoyed some with peanut butter.
Maybe if I make it again I'll add some more bananas and only use white sugar but aside from that I also felt like something else was missing and I'm not sure what. Despite that though I still feel like it is a good recipe for a healthier banana bread.

Low-Fat Banana Bread
Adapted from Epicurious

2 large eggs
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup smashed ripe bananas (about 3 medium)
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 325°F. Lightly grease 8 1/2x4 1/2x2 1/2-inch pan; dust with flour. Using electric mixer; beat eggs and sugar in large bowl until thick and light, about 5 minutes. Mix in smashed bananas, buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt over mixture; beat until just blended. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

Bake bread until golden brown on top and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Turn bread out onto rack and cool.

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