Banana Chocolate-Chip Walnut Bread
Bananas in our house are consumed in what you could say are the extreme states of their ripeness — slightly underripe or way overripe. While I do love bananas, I have to admit that my favorite time to eat them is when they’re just past green, just past the point when they taste fibrous and leave your tongue with a fuzzy feel. Consequently, when bananas in our house aren’t eaten fast enough and develop a brown, spotty skin, I know I won’t be eating them in their plain jane state…but I immediately think of making banana bread. This recipe hits the spot: it has a touch of white whole wheat flour, its slight nutty flavor going well with the walnuts. And of course, a healthy dose of chocolate!
Adapted from Bon Appetit, February 2000
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour (I like to use King Arthur white whole wheat)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup semi- or bittersweet chocolate chips (I prefer Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet)
1 cup walnuts, toasted, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter and flour 9x5x2 1/2-inch loaf pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Combine the chocolate chips and walnuts in a small bowl; add 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture and toss to coat.
Cream together the butter and sugar until well blended, then beat in the eggs one at a time. Next, beat in the mashed bananas and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and stir until combined. Spoon 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan, and top with half the chocolate chip/walnut mixture. Spoon another third of the batter in, and top with the rest of the chocolate chip/walnut mixture. Finish with the last 1/3 of the batter. Run a knife through the pan in a zigzag pattern to disperse the chips and nuts.
Bake until a tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 55 minutes. Turn out onto rack and cool.
Makes 1 9×5 loaf.