SILVER PALATE BANANA BREAD
When life gives you rotten bananas, make banana bread. In fact, seek a copy of the 1980's best selling Silver Palate Cookbook, turn to page 305, and be ready for the world's best banana bread recipe. This is an all butter quick bread with a bit of whole wheat flour thrown in to give it a moist, hearty texture and a satisfying bite. So beloved is this bread at Weston Table that we intentionally buy extra bananas in hopes that someone in our test kitchen will notice and bake up a nutty afternoon tea loaf.
After a day or two, make toast out of leftover slices. For breakfast or lunch, take a page from the Parish Cafe in Boston: top a slice with Black Forest ham and some shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Heat until the cheese melts. Serve with a tablespoon of mango chutney. This bread freezes well for up to 2 months.
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup whole-wheat flour
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup shelled walnuts, coarsely chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a standard LOAF PAN.
2. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
3. Sift the all-purpose flour, baking soda, and salt together. Stir in the whole-wheat flour, and add to the creamed mixture, mixing well.
4. Fold in the mashed bananas, vanilla and walnuts.
5. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake on the center rack of the oven until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then place on a wire rack to cool completely.