Spiced Banana Bread

DSCF1966

(MARINA) Ahh, Banana Bread. The joy of the monkey food. It’s the one thing all cooks know how to make. No wonder: It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3. I think of banana bread as more of a fall treat, but really in the world of baking, the seasons don’t matter. It’s the food that counts, and I love this bread any day.

Our Spiced Banana Bread makes me think of Halloween and the great fun we have when we rip the guts out of a pumpkin. Banana Bread has the same smell. The spices in the bread are really strong and make the whole loaf have one more dimension.

DSCF1946

To wrap things up, I want to tell all the food people out there that if you haven’t made Banana Bread, your missing out! First thing tomorrow, when you do make it, think of me, Marina. Oh, I better go, the Banana Bread just came out of the oven!

DSCF1943

(KERI) There is great comfort in a groove. Getting into one. Getting back into the swing of things when your world’s axis has been slightly (or hugely) tilted. No matter if the tilt has been a welcome one or an undesirable guest, coming back to the hub of your life always feels good. Yes, I know I like schedules, but I don’t think I’m alone here.

This luscious banana bread represents a sort of getting back in the swing of things for us here at Two Bites Kitchen. Bite One made a pact with me when we started this blog thing that we would be serious. We would dedicate. We would be diligent. But then, life takes over. Fifth grade and demanding jobs creep in. They must. Math homework and client work are also important components of the hub for us. And so, blogging has fallen out there on the wheel.

DSCF1939DSCF1956

But never our love of food. Rest assured, People, our love for all-things edible is alive and well!

There is no more perfect way to get back to the love than with a lovely loaf of banana goodness. It’s easy. It’s divine. And it feels good to be back with baked deliciousness, here, on this page.

Marina’s right: Every cook and baker has their swear-by banana bread recipe. Come to think of it, it seems that everyone who doesn’t even know how to open a can of soup shows up to the office or potluck with a loaf of monkey bread. Of course they do: It’s easy, it’s divine. And maybe, just maybe, baking it brings the bakers and the non-bakers alike back to the swing of things.

DSCF1963

You’ll love this recipe. We’ve baked so many versions of banana bread over the years and this is the ONE (I swear, I swear!). The tablespoon of bourbon is not to omit. Together with the spices, it creates this warm, friendly, beautifully familiar flavor. You’ll want to make it when you’re axis is in need of alignment…as well as when the swing of your things is perfect.

Spiced Banana Bread – slightly adjusted from The Smitten Kitchen

4 ripe bananas, smashed
1/3 cup melted unsalted butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon good bourbon
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup roughly chopped walnuts

Spray a loaf pan with baking spray. Preheat the oven to 355°F. With a large spoon, mix melted butter into the bananas in a large metal bowl. Mix in the sugar, egg, vanilla and bourbon, then the spices. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last, mix. Pour mixture into a loaf pan. Bake for 50 minutes to one hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack in pan for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and cool. Slice and smile!

DSCF1968