Banana Walnut Bread & Salted Maple Butter
I live in a 1.5 bedroom matchbox of an apartment in Mumbai. And since my husband and I were the first of our friends to move into a place of our own, my apartment became the unspoken Central Perk of our group. Everyone comes over after work, we have a big family dinner and hang out for a couple of hours before my friends head back to their own place.
Considering this has been the standard for the last 4 years, sometimes, I feel the need to just stop. Get away. Not make conversation. And just be quiet. Silence sometimes feels like a hard won luxury. So a few days back, my husband was on flight, my friends all had other plans and I was alone at home. Late at night, silence reigned supreme. And I decided, hey, midnight seems like a good time to fire up the oven.
I was craving banana bread for a couple of days. I even bought some bananas and left them out on the counter to ripen and get spotty. But I didn’t get around to actually making it. So a couple minutes before midnight, I got down to it.
The ingredients got laid out, the oven was preheated. The Kitchen Aid was pulled down and the music was turned on. (The Paper Kites, Electric Indigo is <3)
I already knew this was going to be a marathon session and not a quick sprint. The recipe itself, super easy and quick. But the one woman show I was putting on, not so much.
Arrange the ingredients, take a photo, adjust the lighting, click, ooooh portrait mode, click. Ingredient 1 goes into bowl 2, click. You get the picture.
By the end of it, the house was smelling divine, my phone screen looked like it had been through greasy hell and my Instagram story was kinda dorky but super fun (to me!).
I hope you didn’t get put off by my long and rambling introduction. But seriously, did you not expect this already?
Try it out. The bread comes out moist and flavourful, the banana foster-esque top is yummy, the edges are crumbly and crunchy (I’ll fight you for the corner pieces). The maple butter (because I’m just extra like the cool kids say) takes an already awesome snack and elevates it to Hallelujah status. OK, Now I’m done talking up the recipe.
Go. Make it. Even if it’s midnight. Trust me…you deserve a slice of this bread at 2am. Or mid day. Or 7pm. Whatever floats your boat!
WHAT YOU NEED:
1/2 Cup Butter, melted and cooled
1/2 Cup Walnuts, toasted and chopped
1 3/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Tsp Baking Powder
1/4 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tbsp Vanilla extract (please use the real stuff and not the fake essence crap)
2 Eggs, beaten
3 Ripe Bananas
For the Maple Butter:
1/2 Cup Butter
1 Inch Cinnamon stick
1/2 Cup Maple syrup
Sea salt (just a pinch)
HOW TO MAKE IT:
(Preheat the oven to 180 C)
Make sure you have a Dry bowl & a Wet bowl.
Start by incorporating all the dry ingredients: Flour, Brown Sugar (save a tbsp), Baking soda, Baking Powder & mix them
Take a second clean bowl and start with the wet stuff: 2 of the 3 bananas, mash them, add the beaten eggs, the butter saving 1 tbsp for later, the vanilla, and mix it all together
Top the dry stuff with the walnuts and now slowly pour in the wet stuff. Using a fork, start mixing them all in together to form the bread dough.
Dump the dough into a buttered bread loaf tin and get cracking on the topping.
Cut up the last banana, mix in 2 tbsp flour, the remaining butter, brown sugar and mix in gently.
Layer the coated banana slices on top of the dough.
Into the oven it goes for 45-55 mins or until a knife or skewer comes out clean.
Onto the Maple butter now. In a sauce pan on medium heat, pour in the maple syrup and throw in the cinnamon stick.
Let it come to a boil for about 5 mins.
Dump in the cold butter in cubes. Little at a time. Stir till the cubes are all gone. Let it simmer another 3 mins.
Pour in the vanilla into the stand mixer, then pour in the hot buttery syrup. Starting on a low setting working upto high, start whisking with the paddle attachment. Give it 15 minutes or until it comes together in a glossy, frosting like consistency. It is probably going to be a little looser than buttercream frosting. Dont worry. It firms up in the fridge.
Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes while the bread bakes and comes out the oven.
Thats it. Slice it up, Butter is up, Eat it up! Done and Done!!
Check out the pictures below if you want some pictoral help. Plus, I made a stop motion thingie. Thats on Instagram, so you probably want to go check out my page too.