"The only real stumbling block is the fear of failure. In cooking, you have got to have a what-the-hell attitude." ~ Julia Child

Impress Yourself: Chocolate-Chip Banana Bread

by Julie Tilsner on September 26, 2007

in Kid Food, Minor Miracles, Sugar and Spite, Sweet!

“You made that?”

I had half a loaf of chocolate-chip banana bread, neatly wrapped in plastic, held aloft as I rummaged in the refrigerator for milk. Luke had come by to see the kids. Per normal bedtime routine, tea was in the making. And as per usual, where there is tea (and two nits), there is something sweet to dunk into it. Hence the chocolate-chip banana bread I’d made a few days earlier.

Because I’ve known Luke for 12 years, I caught every ounce of meaning in that surprised exclamation. The skepticism, the arched eyebrow, which mostly boiled down to, and just when did you start baking things that look like actual store-bought baked goods? Luke has endured the worst of the worst. Little wonder he was taken aback.

But I’ll take a compliment, even a back-handed one, anywhere I find it. “Yes,” I smiled. “I made it. All by myself.”

And truth be told I was a little taken aback at how good this bread came out myself. When I set out to make it, typically, I had only half the ingredients on hand; only two bananas, no granulated sugar, only super-pure, hard core cinnamon Kim had sent me. Somehow it rose above my incompetence. And the result was a really pretty kick-ass chocolate-chip banana bread that keeps well in the fridge. For, like, weeks!

Food blog fanatics won’t be surprised to learn that I pulled this one off of the lovely Molly’s always delicious food blog, Orangette. She in turn, gives credit to another blogger for the recipe. Who knows where it all really started. As long as we’re grateful, and God knows I am. Here is the recipe:

pre-heat the oven to 375. Butter or spray an 8-inch square pan. I didn’t have one, so I used a small loaf pan instead.

3 very ripe bananas (medium to large.)
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

For topping:
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon

Mash the bananas with a fork (I have some I can lend you) in a medium mixing bowl. Add the eggs and beat well to combine. Your kids can help you with this, especially if they’re young boys and like the gross-out factor. Add the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and vanilla, and stir to mix. Add ¾ cup of the chocolate chips, and stir briefly. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and set aside.

In a small bowl, stir together the topping ingredients. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the batter in the pan, and top with the remaining ¼ cup chocolate chips.

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Molly notes: This bread, like many banana sweets, freezes beautifully. Sometimes I even like to eat frozen, cut into thick, cold, chewy slices. It’s the perfect snack for a hot summer afternoon. I took this suggestion. Yeah Baby!

Mine came out a moist, delightful little loaf, looking for all the world like a store-bought confection. The children ate it without comment, which is generally a good sign, and left smudgy, chocolate fingerprints all over my kitchen wall.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Christine September 26, 2007 at 10:24 am

Oh my heavens that looks gorgeous!


LH September 26, 2007 at 9:21 pm

As usual, Hollywood makes the Brit the villain of the piece . . . the eyebrow was so not arched.
But the bread was good.


AT September 27, 2007 at 11:28 am

..well, at least I made a mashing contribution..


Natural Leap September 27, 2007 at 7:00 pm

I have a whole bunch of frozen bananas just screaming at me to be used in this recipe:-))
Thanks Di


Mr Squid October 2, 2007 at 5:58 pm

It looks yummy. My banana bread always tends to end up a dense, mushy mess that my kids poke at and then decide that they are not hungry.


RookieMom Whitney October 4, 2007 at 11:49 am

Sounds great, and I just happen to have heaps of bananas rotting on my counter. Always.
I tend to believe I will use bananas as my middle of the night nursing snack, but I am on a cashew kick. So. Poor bananas. Continue to be purchased and neglected.


eliza October 6, 2007 at 11:11 pm

your post make me smile 🙂 banana bread makes regular appearance in my family quite frankly because i can’t stand ripe bananas 😀


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